Miami Greek leaders concerned over trend of bad behavior

OXFORD, OH (FOX19) - Greek leaders at Miami University are growing concerned about a trend of bad behavior that's led to multiple sorority and fraternity suspensions over the past several years.

Recently, Beta Theta Pi was forced to close its founding chapter immediately following an investigation into alcohol abuse, a pattern of misconduct and hazing.

Beta will be shut down for the next two years.

"I think because it happens frequently it seems like it's the norm or it's inevitable," said Andrea Christman.

It's starting to become a bad trend, but Greek leaders say sorority and fraternity suspensions are far from acceptable.

"As young adults we do need a reminder of our organizations and why we're involved in them," said Joe Weirtz the Interfraternal Council Vice President.

The cause for concern comes after a series of incidents.

In 2010, Pi Beta Phi was suspended a year for underage drinking and trashing a lakeside lodge. The Alpha Xi Delta sorority suspended for the same thing at a formal at the Freedom Center.

Two years ago, Phi Kappa Tau and Sigma Alpha Epsilon were suspended after a fireworks battle turned up drugs. That same year, Sigma Chi was kicked off for hazing.

In April, Alpha Xi Delta was suspended for alcohol. Now Beta is kicked off for alcohol abuse and hazing.

"The incidents with Beta and everything else that's been happening has been a warning to a lot of the organizations on campus that if they're not doing the right things they will be held accountable," said Caitlin Duckworth the president of Panhellenic Association.

Andrea Christman didn't choose to join a sorority, but she says despite the negative light Geek life at Miami receives from these incidents, it shouldn't deter someone from coming to Oxford.

"You absolutely can't brand it as one thing. If one sorority or one fraternity makes a mistake. You can't say the rest of them are bad and not to mention if you don't want to be in a sorority then be in a million other things that are here," said Christman.

So what's it going to take to see some changes? Greek leaders say they're already working on fun incentives to learn about risk management.

"Internally within the chapters that's an area where we can work on and strengthen to better our community as a whole," said Weirtz.

"The events that have happened in the community over the last couple weeks, they've been disheartening and discouraging but we've learned and we're able to use them and grow and make progress," said Caitlin Duckworth.

All of the sororities and fraternities that have received sanctions over the last few years are required to receive educational training concerning these issues.

Greek leaders say despite the various sanctions handed down in the last four years, this past year both sororities and fraternities had some of their highest recruitment totals.

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