Fraternity chapter receives two-year suspension

May 24, 2012

UW-Madison’s Delta Upsilon fraternity chapter has been suspended for two years in the wake of violations of Student Organization Conduct policies.

The university’s Committee on Student Organizations levied sanctions on the chapter, 644 N. Frances St., that prevent it from holding events, reserving space or enjoying the other privileges of student organization status. In addition, the organization will temporarily lose all membership privileges in the Interfraternity Council.

In the 2013-14 academic year, the group faces a structured suspension that would allow recruitment activities to resume under close supervision from the Center for Leadership and Involvement.

The case stems from actions of the chapter and its members during an incident involving two female UW-Madison students on March 16.

In incident, the female students, who are African American, reported walking on the fraternity’s property at the shore of Lake Mendota and becoming the subject of racial and class-oriented taunts from fraternity members on the fraternity house porch. The women reported that they proceeded to leave, but before they could do so, a glass bottle was also thrown in their direction. No one was injured.

In its review, the committee cited the organization for the following violations that led to the sanctions:

  • The chapter did not exert reasonable caution for safety as a bottle was thrown as a result of this incident.
  • The committee expressed concern over the role of alcohol in the chapter and in the incident. The incident occurred 22 days after DU was removed from alcohol probation for an underage drinking violation in 2011.
  • The committee found that individual members of the chapter who confronted the women represented the fraternity as a whole.

In the committee’s report, the nature of the taunts and whether the bottle was thrown intentionally at the women were not substantiated due to conflicting accounts of the incident.

The chapter can appeal the Committee on Student Organization’s decision.