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Dorms to Limit FSILGers at Parties

By Jennifer Krishnan


The Dormitory Council will be limiting the number of members of fraternities, sororities, and independent living groups in attendance at the two major dormitory rush parties.

A maximum of five members of each FSILG can be present at either party at one time, according to a set of rules agreed upon by Dormcon and the Interfraternity Council.

“We didn’t want to be overrun” by FSILG members, said Emily E. Cofer ’04, Dormcon president. She said all dormitory residents who came back to MIT early to help with rush, of which there are about 30 per dormitory, are expected to attend the party.

John J. Huss ’05, IFC recruitment chair, said that five members per living group represented an “appropriate level of involvement” for the IFC.

The rules also include a provision that “FSILGs should not be removing freshmen from either party with the intention of taking them back to FSILGs,” and Cofer said the same rule was “understood between all the dorms: ... don’t bring freshmen back to your part of campus” during the other side’s party.

“I definitely understand the rationale for that rule, but the exact way that it’s written is not clear to me,” Huss said, referring to the fact that members of dormitories are not mentioned in the rules.

Huss added that for the IFC, Orientation is “not really for rush.” Instead, he said, it is a “time [for freshmen] to get accustomed to the campus and, if anything, just to rush them for the system in general.”

Shirts to mark upperclassmen

Cofer said the rules would be handled by Judicial committee members, two from each dormitory plus some from the IFC.

All upperclassmen are required to wear shirts identifying their dormitory or FSILG affiliation, according to the rules for the parties.

Cofer said dormitory residents who were also members of FSILGs had to choose which shirt to wear, but were not restricted from mentioning their other affiliations.

“We’re not going to tell people that you can’t say you’re in a sorority just because you live in Next House or something,” she said.

As for making sure that extra FSILG members don’t sneak in by just not wearing their shirts, Cofer said “we’re kind of just hoping that everyone will respect the rules. ... There will be enough dorm residents around that [we hope] somebody will recognize these people as upperclassmen.” She said Dormcon had considered giving the freshmen badges, but that badges were “too restrictive and not in the spirit of partying.”

Parties a new part of Orientation

Tonight’s Island in the Sun party, sponsored by the “west campus dorms,” and tomorrow night’s Red Sector A party, sponsored by the “east campus dorms,” are new additions to the Orientation schedule this year.

Cofer said last year, most freshmen housed in the “west campus dorms” never looked at the “east campus dorms,” and vice versa. These “REX” (Residence Exploration) parties are an “attempt to get them to look at both sides of campus ... [in] rush that's been compressed into several hours.”

For Dormcon purposes, the “east campus dorms” include Bexley Hall, East Campus, Random Hall, and Senior House. The “west campus dorms” comprise Baker House, Burton-Conner, MacGregor House, McCormick Hall, New House, Next House, and Simmons Hall.

While the parties are being organized by members of the dormitories, the funding comes almost entirely from the offices of Dean for Student Life Larry G. Benedict, Dean for Undergraduate Education Robert P. Redwine, and Associate Dean for Student Life Programs Barbara A. Baker. These offices have provided about $17,000 for the two parties combined, Cofer said.

FSILG members were incorporated into the event “so that the freshmen will have an opportunity to meet the upperclassmen” in the FSILGS and to “help ensure that their rush period begins on a positive and strong note later in the fall. Furthermore, FSILG participation fosters a sense of unity across campus,” according to a June proposal for the Residence Exploration parties.