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Rush on Par with Predictions, Previous Year

By Steve Lim

The host of parties, trips, and dinners that mark rush week paid off for many fraternities, sororities and independent living groups. Most of the houses posted results on par with those they achieved last year.

Several houses saw an increase in pledge numbers this year, including Zeta Psi, Pi Lambda Phi, and Alpha Delta Phi.

Zeta Psi almost doubled the number of pledges it had last year, with an increase from 12 pledges to 21 this year.

"A lot of [brothers and freshmen] were around on Friday and Saturday night," said Zeta Psi Rush Chair Chris R. Laughman '99, who also said he was satisfied with this year's rush.

"There was a lot of enthusiasm from work week which carried itself through rush. Every couple of years, everything works perfectly, and you have the feeling that rush will run well," Laughman said.

PLP's pledge numbers increased from 7 to 12 this year, and ADPsaw a rise from 11 pledges last year to 16 this time.

Pledge yields fall for some houses

On the other hand, some fraternities, such as Chi Phi, Phi Beta Epsilon, and Theta Delta Chi, saw their numbers drop slightly this year.

The number of students pledging Chi Phi fell to 5 from 13 last year. This "was below what we expected but we chose quality over quantity," said Todd S. Harrison '98, the fraternity's rush chair.

"We are very pleased with the group we got I think [rush] was a success," Harrison said. Chi Phi will not be impacted adversely by the relatively low numbers, because most of the current house membership will remain next year and the fraternity plans to look for freshman members throughout the fall, he said.

PBE member Dante Roulette '98 said he was not disappointed with this year's results despite a reduction in the number of pledges. "I think that we did just as well as last year," he said.

"There was no difference in the quality of people, and we were expecting fewer pledges this year," Roulette said.

Crowding worsens in dormitories

Crowding in the dormitories is typically impacted by the success of FSILGs during rush, since low rush numbers translate into more students living in campus dormitories.

In order to provide housing for all freshmen, rooms in residence halls are crowded, a process in which, for instance, large singles are converted to doubles, or large doubles into triples. Since fewer freshmen pledged FSILGs this year, the number of students beyond capacity who require living space increased by about 30.

There are approximately 143 individuals beyond regular housing capacity that require accommodations this year, compared to 114 last year, and 120 in 1995, according to Phillip M. Bernard, program director of residential life.

"I think that the slow rush this year, as well as the increase in rents due to the changes in Cambridge rent control laws have had an impact on those numbers," Bernard said.

Burton-Conner House had the most number of excess students of all the dormitories with 33, followed by Next House with 32 and East Campus with 30.