3 frats suspended, 1 removed from campus

After months of partying by Greek organizations during COVID-19 and outrage from faculty and students alike, the University of Miami enacted its first suspensions of Greek organizations this semester.

According to the Dean of Students website, fraternities Alpha Epsilon Pi, Beta Theta Pi and Sigma Chi have all been suspended. This follows multiple reports from The Miami Hurricane this semester detailing large parties hosted across the city by fraternities. In addition to these suspensions, Sigma Alpha Mu’s charter was revoked, meaning it is no longer allowed to function as a fraternity at UM.

Additionally, Sigma Alpha Epsilon is currently under “cease function orders,” indicating an ongoing investigation.

“It’s about damn time,” said one sorority member who requested to remain anonymous. The Dean of Students office refused to make anyone available for an interview for this article and declined to comment.

This marks Sigma Chi’s second suspension for COVID-19 violations this school year. They were the first fraternity that was known to host a party during the fall semester and continued to do so until they were eventually suspended in October. At the start of the spring semester, Sigma Chi was listed as back in “good standing” on the Dean of Students website. Following more parties and more reports, they are now suspended again. UM refused to provide information on what the length of this suspension will be.

“I hope they are gone all of next year. What they have been doing is gross and a disgrace,” said the sorority member.

Sigma Chi President Zachary Slogoff declined to comment on the suspension.

At the start of March, Alpha Epsilon Pi, Beta Theta Pi, Sigma Alpha Mu and Sigma Chi were all put under cease and desist orders by the Dean of Students office. They remained under these orders until this week, at which point, the website updated to reflect the new punishments.

Beta Theta Pi hosted a large party earlier in the semester that was reported by The Hurricane and attendees have said it led to the spread of at least a half dozen COVID cases.

Several students gathered for a pool party hosted by Beta Theta Pi on Saturday, Jan. 30.
Several students gathered for a pool party hosted by Beta Theta Pi on Saturday, Jan. 30.

Beta Theta Pi President Spencer Silvernail did not reply to a request for comment.

The Dean of Students office refused an interview request to discuss Sigma Alpha Mu’s removal from campus and instead deferred to a statement made on Mu Epsilons national page.

The closure of Sigma Alpha Mu, commonly known as Sammy, caught some in Greek Life off-guard.

“They have not behaved any worse than anyone else,” said a member of Greek Life. Multiple Greek Life members spoken to for this article said they feel Sigma Alpha Mu’s demise is a result of its small size and lack of prestige. Some in Greek Life have suggested that other fraternities like Sigma Chi, which has now been suspended for back-to-back semesters, remains protected by its larger size and prominence on campus.

Sigma Alpha Mu president Jacob Panzer declined to comment.

Midway through the second semester of COVID-19 at UM, seven of UM’s 11 fraternities have been ordered to cease operations and or suspended.