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Sig Ep Loses Activity Privileges After Latest Alcohol Incident

By Jennifer Lane
Editor In Chief

Sigma Phi Epsilon was suspended from holding organized activities and having alcohol on the premises yesterday, following the treatment of an 18-year-old freshman for alcohol intoxication.

The student was transported from Baker House to the Medical Center at 3 a.m. Saturday. The dean's office and the Campus Police are investigating reports that she was served alcohol at Sig Ep.

When the student returned to Baker Saturday morning, students there "made the decision that she needed to go to the Med Center," said Jennifer R. Bautista '98, Baker president. Baker residents were having a setup party for their house formal, which was held Saturday night.

The current "evidence and witnesses indicate that the woman did consume a lot of alcohol at the fraternity," said Interfraternity Council President Iddo Gilon '98. "I think MIT is going to pursue this very aggressively," he added.

If the allegations are true, the house may face further sanctions. However, "nothing we can do, short of extremely draconian measures can stop this," Gilon said. "People, in general, need to be responsible ... guests need to be responsible, too."

"It's disappointing that this type of stuff is going on, that people are being irresponsible," Bautista said.

President Charles M. Vest said that no immediate changes to MIT's alcohol policy would probably result from the incident. "The primary thing we have to rely on is working very hard to educate ourselves and bringing around enough cultural change to get people to recognize the serious effects alcohol has on the community," he said.

Theta Chi warned

Residents of Theta Chi removed all alcohol from the house and declared the house substance-free following the hospitalization of a Boston University freshman for alcohol poisoning.

The fraternity was warned yesterday that any infraction of the voluntary ban or the presence of alcohol in the house could result in suspension.

The Institute did not suspend the fraternity because preliminary results of the investigation indicate that the drinking occurred in an individual's room and not at a fraternity event.

Events indicate close scrutiny

There's currently a heightened sensitivity by the Institute towards alcohol incidents, Gilon said. However "I don't think more regulation is necessary,"he said. It "wouldn't prevent individuals from acting in irresponsible or hazardous ways," he said.

Sig Ep is the third fraternity to come under fire after the alcohol-related death of Scott S. Krueger '01 at Phi Gamma Delta.

Zeta Psi eliminated their house tapping system after an earlier incident where an underage resident attempted to purchase a keg.

Additionally, the National Interfraternity Conference, recently voted to support substance-free campuses nationwide.

"In the next 5 to 10 years, we may be looking at an entirely different collegiate system," Gilon said.

Dan McGuire contributed to the reporting of this story.