OXFORD, Miss. – After a review of the Mississippi Alpha Chapter, the board of directors of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity has decided to close the chapter on the University of Mississippi campus.
"We are disappointed that a pattern of bad behavior and serious, inexcusable hazing occurred within the chapter," UM Dean of Students Sparky Reardon said. "Periodic reports from and meetings with local alumni and national headquarters led us to believe that the chapter was improving. Based on regular visits by representatives from the University of Mississippi Office of Greek Life with current Sigma Phi Epsilon members, chapter officers, local and regional volunteers, and national headquarters, the university had no reason to believe this type of behavior and conduct was happening."
At the university's request, the national headquarters conducted an internal review of the fraternity that uncovered conduct violating both fraternity and university policies. This conduct included underage drinking and hazing incidents.
The university's Office of Greek Life educates fraternities and sororities on its hazing policy and alcohol policies each semester. Greek Life policy dictates that leadership throughout all Interfraternity Council organizations complete and sign anti-hazing contracts.
Furthermore, all incoming UM students are required to complete an alcohol education course. Officials make it clear to all IFC leadership that the university prohibits hazing in any form and expects organizations to initiate dialogue on hazing and alcohol policies.
"We are surprised and extremely disappointed that these activities occurred, and we are committed to providing a safe, educational environment for all students," said Brandi Hephner LaBanc, vice chancellor for student affairs.
The university has a zero-tolerance policy for hazing. If any student experiences hazing or knows of a hazing incident, they may anonymously report the situation to the Office of the Dean of Students.