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Thursday, February 20, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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WSU fraternities shut down in 2012, 2014 may be reinstated

UPDATED: Wed., April 19, 2017

File photo of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house taken on April 19, 2001 in Pullman. (Kevin German / SR)
File photo of Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house taken on April 19, 2001 in Pullman. (Kevin German / SR)
By Shanon Quinn Moscow-Pullman Daily News

A pair of fraternities shut down in 2012 and 2014 will return to Washington State University’s Greek Row this fall as associate members and may earn full membership by spring 2018 semester.

Mitchell Weholt, vice president of public relations for the WSU Interfraternity Council, said the IFC senate voted April 3 to reinstate Phi Kappa Tau, and Monday to reinstate Pi Kappa Alpha. Weholt said the final decision to reinstate the houses rests with WSU.

Violations at Phi Kappa Tau allegedly took place Aug. 24, 2014, during the Greek community’s bid day and included abuse of the student conduct system; failure to comply with university officials or law enforcement officers; alcohol and hazing violations of university policy, rules or regulations; and retaliation.

Adam Jussel, director of Student Standards and Accountability at WSU, said in 2014 his office had received a report that alcohol had been provided to and consumed by new, underage members at a fraternity chapter house recognized by the university and one of the new members had been hospitalized.

The office began an investigation and the Conduct Board heard the case in late September 2014, Jussel said. Phi Kappa Tau appealed the board’s decision to the university Appeals Board, which upheld the decision. The fraternity then appealed to WSU’s Office of the President – an action that resulted in no change of decision and the organization’s university recognition being revoked until August of this year.

In response to charges brought forth by the Student Conduct Board Fraternity, members pleaded “responsible” to failure to comply, violation of university protocol and alcohol violations, but denied responsibility of retaliation, misuse of conduct system, abuse to self and others, and reckless endangerment. As alcohol was used during a fraternity activity, the charges included hazing.

The second house that may reopen in the fall is Pi Kappa Alpha, which was shut down in 2012, following its failure to complete a membership review, and for purchasing alcohol during a time they were under sanctions preventing it from doing so.

Weholt said both chapters have created and presented a comprehensive development plan to help integrate their houses back into the community.

Both houses will be regarded as associate members of the Interfraternity Council in fall semester, meaning they will be unable to hold social events, and they will report to the Greek Standards Board on a monthly basis to give updates on their progress.

The WSU student conduct office did not respond to request for comment.

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