Two MIT fraternities, Phi Beta Epsilon (PBE) and Beta Theta Pi, have been barred from extending bids to new members this year according to Interfraternity Council president Ryan Schoen ’11.
“Unfortunately two of our member organizations have committed serious violations against the rules established by the Interfraternity Council,” Schoen wrote in a statement to the community on Thursday.
Schoen declined to comment on the nature of the violations because, he said, judicial procedures are ongoing. Schoen has also asked fraternity members not to comment for now.
The two fraternities have been ordered to halt all “recruitment operations” — including having freshmen on their premises — and will not be able to extend bids this year.
According to Schoen, Beta Theta Pi had a hearing on Sunday before the Rush Infractions Board, which deals with violations of the IFC recruitment rules. PBE had a hearing on Monday before a Judicial Committee hearing board, which deal with general violations.
Fraternities are given a week to file an appeal after a final decision, but Schoen would not say where in the process PBE and Beta Theta Pi are.
At 1:18 a.m. on Wednesday, PBE’s rush website (http://pbe.mit.edu/rush10.html) was updated to announce that PBE would not be continuing rush due to “unforeseen circumstances,” and that there would not be a pledge class of 2014. The same note was posted on the front door of the PBE house. The note encouraged potential members to consider the other 26 fraternities.
The Beta Theta Pi website still shows its rush calendar as of press time last night.
Members of PBE and Beta Theta Pi declined to comment to The Tech.
One freshman who spoke on condition of anonymity said he “considered joining PBE” but found out on Wednesday from a PBE member that the fraternity would not be allowed to have a 2014 pledge class. The fraternity member did not offer any explanation.
“I asked one of the brothers why they couldn’t [rush] and he told me he would tell me next week when everything is settled,” the freshman said.
A common rumor about PBE is that it violated rules against hazing. The Tech contacted two people who had depledged last year: Both said that they had never been subjected to hazing in their time at the fraternity, and had not heard of hazing taking place in the past year.
In his letter, Schoen asked the community to “Please respect the privacy and dignity of these organizations by not believing or further spreading any inaccurate or unconfirmed information.” The statement is available at http://www.mitifc.org/docs.php.