Cal Poly’s chapter of Delta Sigma Phi is on social probation after an investigation into alleged misconduct at a party earlier this month, according to Cal Poly Student Life and Leadership director Stephan Lamb.

Lamb dealt the sanctions after consulting with the fraternity’s national headquarters. He determined its punishment to be appropriate after ongoing discussions with the Delta Sigma Phi’s executive director. The sanctions will disallow the organization from participating in any alcohol-related activities until members vacate the property where the party occurred at the end of the quarter.

“I love it when the national takes the role of responsibility and says, ‘No, this conduct is not appropriate; it is not what we expect from our men,’” he said.

Cal Poly has seen problems at Monte Vista Place apartment for years, dating back to when another fraternity owned the apartments before its disaffiliation, Lamb said. After the Delta Sigma Phi members move out of the property, the Delta Chi fraternity will take it over. Lamb said he plans to work with Delta Chi to ensure there are no further problems there.

“My biggest concern with all of this is I want Monte Vista being looked at until these guys move out,” he said.

Delta Sigma Phi came into the spotlight on April 6 when Lamb initiated an investigation into the fraternity’s involvement with a party the night before. A police report sent to Lamb from that night detailed a 300-person party with four citations for unruly gatherings and two arrests, including one for driving under the influence.

Those who took part in the investigation said the Delta Sigma Phi executive board was cooperative with the investigation and did not dispute any of the police report. Lamb said the police’s account of the incident was specific, so there was not room for fraternity leaders to dispute it.

The police report initially cited Phi Sigma Kappa as the fraternity connected to the party, but greek life director Diego Silva said his familiarity with the Monte Vista Place apartments led him to believe Delta Sigma Phi had a more significant involvement. Though both fraternities were immediately given cease-and-desist orders, Phi Sigma Kappa was acquitted and the status was removed.

Lamb said through joint investigations with Delta Sigma Phi’s headquarters, the offices concluded the fraternity violated its risk management policies by hosting an open party at Monte Vista Place. But Thomas Maher, Interfraternity Council judicial chair, said the incident was isolated, and he does not expect anything similar to happen in the future.

“I honestly think it was a very minor incident,” Maher said. “We’re taking the right measures.”

The Cal Poly Interfraternity Council conducted its own side-by-side investigation into the party and made a recommendation to Lamb’s office on Tuesday. Maher said it was important to the council that the fraternity was not solely punished but also educated on risk management and prevention.

“What we wanted to do was bring it to a positive light and set benchmarks,” Maher said.

University Police Department (UPD) officers who responded to the party on April 5 chose to recommend their report be sent to the Office of Student Life and Leadership, which then initiated the investigation, UPD chief Bill Watton said. It is standard protocol to send a report to a university department when officers observe illegal behavior that could be affiliated with a university group, such as a fraternity, Watton said.

What is difficult, however, is determining when an event such as a party is connected to a campus group. Watton said there are several criteria his office looks at when evaluating if a report needs to be sent to the school, but ultimately, any punishment is left up to the on-campus office.

“A fraternity may have a party, but they just call it a house party,” Watton said. “Unless we can show it’s a fraternity event, then we can’t really do anything with the university.”

Delta Sigma Phi is the second greek organization to face punishment this academic year. The Alpha Phi sorority came under investigation during fall when an ex-pledge was transported to Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center after drinking with members of the sorority the night after she received her sorority bid.

Alpha Phi was sentenced to a five-month suspension for what Lamb said was a violation of the education code’s hazing policy. The sorority was let off its social probation in late March.

Delta Sigma Phi president Michael Kuelpman declined to comment on the suspension as of press time. More details will be available from the fraternity’s national board later today.

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8 Comments

  1. So at what point does the college cut their ties and realize these organizations do more harm than good? The days of Animal House are over. If Cal Poly wants to move forward as a serious college in America, they cannot be tied to organizations that harm their students. They cannot stop underage drinking, but they can cut ties with organizations that seem to promote or encourage it. No one wins in these DSP type problems. Is Cal Poly a better college with greek life?

    The greek system as a whole promotes classiness in sororities and gentlemen in fraternities, yet all I have heard is hazing and excessive alcohol consumption from sororities and rape from fraternities. Either they start living up to their own standards or admit they don’t have any.

    1. On average at Cal Poly and nationwide, Greeks have better grades, do more for the community and are more involved on campus, and ultimately take more positions of power in their lives than independents. Why would Cal Poly eliminate a group that so obviously promotes success in its members?

  2. ^^^That is all you have heard? Perhaps this blame can be put on our press. Take a look at the Facebook group that is trying to save Cal Poly Greek life. Greeks GPA overall is higher than the averages. Go to any executive meeting; treasurers learn to deal with and allocate hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash flow, Presidents and philanthropy chairs learn to organize 80+ members into events that raise awareness and money for important organizations, safe partying is ensured through sober brothers/sisters watching over events and making sure that there are always sober rides. Greek system does not promote drinking and rape, it promotes just the opposite. We know we are kn a close watch and we must conduct ourselves accordingly. You are arrogant, the greek system teaches leadership and responsibility. How about you don’t take what you hear and run with it, do some research and form your own opinion

  3. Ok student…how does Harvard, Princeton, and Yale have Greek life and maintain to be the most prestigious schools in the world? They experience the same problems as does every other school with Greek Life, yet their administration solves these problems reasonably in order for Greek life to remain and carry out their cherished traditions. Cal Poly isn’t alone in this battle. Many other school respect these traditions while maintaining a healthy student life. How does this happen? Is it magic or is administration putting more thought into these problems rather than eradicating it as a whole and taking away the other side of what many students experience in college beyond their schoolwork, which is a social life that will lead to life-long connections and networking that have and will continue to provide graduating and current students with more options and resources to help guide them in the difficult and stressful times to come. Has anyone noticed the consistent suicides here at Cal Poly? I’m not saying it is in any way related to greek life, but perhaps a problem that needs to be more focused on.

    (For the record, there are more deaths due to suicide at Cal Poly than Greek Life)

  4. Really? Cease and desist for underage drinking. We all know that a large portion of underage college students are going to drink. That’s a fact, and people just need to accept that like it or not. It is part of the culture, people in Greek life may indulge in that, may not, but that doesn’t mean they should be singled out for an issue that is far greater than them. If they are going to single out fraternities, why not single out almost the entire student body. If police want to do their job, why not ticket the people that live at the residence, and just move on with more important things. People need a scapegoat, and I’m not saying underage people should drink, but singling out an organization is not nor ever shall be the answer. The responsibility lies within the individual. People need to stop looking for other people to blame for society’s problems.

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