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KAPsi, RCA Cooperate on Hazing Incident

Last spring, Residence and Campus Activities indefinitely suspended recognition of the Theta Iota Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated pending outcome of further investigation of an incident that violated MIT's policy on hazing.

MIT's policy is in place to insure the safety and livelihood of all its student body. It defines hazing as any type of activity engaged in by a student organization which imposes physical or mental stress on individuals seeking membership into the organization. Irresponsible conduct, whether malicious or not, jeopardizes students' well-being and thereby jeopardizes our community's prosperity.

The objective of the student activities program is to promote a community of healthy extracurricular activity for the benefit of MIT and all its students. The Theta Iota chapter shares this mission and supports and cooperates with all actions recommended by RCA.

The incident only involved a few members of the chapter, but it made the entire chapter realize that what the individuals involved believed was horseplay among members conflicted with MIT policies governing the conduct of student organizations. On behalf of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., we would like to take full advantage of this opportunity to make the community aware of our mistake in an effort to promote the welfare of our student organizations.

Student life suffers when student organizations are not recognized. RCA recognizes this fact and is there to facilitate appropriate student organization conduct. The Theta Iota chapter provides a great deal of opportunities for community service, leadership, and cultural activities to our community and was distinguished as National Chapter of the Year in 1993 for its efforts. As an MIT student organization, we must conduct ourselves responsibly in accordance with MIT policy and maintain good standing or the community will suffer.

RCA and the Theta Iota chapter determined that the chapter did not have the benefit of some of the operational infrastructure of many Interfraternity Council organizations, and for that reason developed an administrative agreement to implement some changes that will help us going forward with a better understanding of student organization guidelines.

Until the provisions of the agreement are met, the chapter will remain on suspension and is restricted to one fund-raising activity and community service activities detailed in our annual Achievement Package. Other implications of the agreement include the following:

Enlisting two MIT faculty/staff members as chapter advisers approved by RCA.

Reviewing the MIT guidelines for conduct of organizations, and signing anti-hazing statements.

Providing various leadership training seminars for the chapter and for other organizations who may benefit from our experience.

We hope that when the required activities are completed that our chapter will again be recognized by MIT.

Berdell Knowles Jr. '96

Member, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity