Greek community prepares for leadership reorganization

The council members of Beta Phi meet together on Monday, March 18, 2013 to talk about the week's business. With a restructuring of the current governing Greek council into a president's council, the Greek organizations of SF State are collectively moving forward with unifying the voices of Greek life.  Photo by Frank Leal / Xpress

The council members of Beta Phi meet together on Monday, March 18, 2013 to talk about the week's business. With a restructuring of the current governing Greek council into a president's council, the Greek organizations of SF State are collectively moving forward with unifying the voices of Greek life. Photo by Frank Leal / Xpress

The Fraternity Sorority Council, the sole governing council over all members of Greek-lettered organizations, has been proposed by the Greek community to be reconstructed into a president’s council.

There have been attempts in previous years to restructure the FSC, but they were never approved due to a lack of input from students. If approved, presidents of each Greek organization and national councils, such as the InterFraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council and National Panhellenic Conference, will attend meetings once a month to discuss judicial affairs and expansion within the Greek community.

This would reconstruct the current council into a council made up of only presidents, as opposed to a governing body with two different representatives from each organization.

“Based on student interest, the Student Involvement and Career Center is exploring the possibility of how the University recognizes and works with various councils in the fraternity and sorority community,” director of SICC, Sarah Bauer, said. “This could mean University recognition of councils in addition to the FSC.”

FSC serves as a council that unites all Greek organizations on campus through social and community service events, and maintains the image of Greek life and conduct. It was implemented back in 1985 in order to bring Greek life back onto campus.

“Back in the early 80s, Greeks were stigmatized as ‘too wild,'” Luke Doylemason, brother of Pi Kappa Phi and president of IFC, said. “Greek life was only allowed back on campus under the condition of implementing the FSC.”

FSC is the only council recognized by the SICC, while others are still working toward becoming recognized, but must be approved by the SICC and abide by the same requirements when founding an organization.

“If (the proposal) goes through, getting officially recognized will be IFC’s number one priority,” Doylemason said.

One crucial issue with the FSC is lack of student involvement within the organization.

“(FSC) is lacking involvement from all its members and since we all have different goals or different ways of doing things, it becomes difficult for all of us to come together as one,” Ashlee Homen, president of FSC and sister of Beta Phi, said.

A recent SF State cinema graduate, Jason Zavaleta, is the founder of the co-ed cinema fraternity Delta Kappa Alpha, and a founding father of the national social fraternity Alpha Sigma Phi, Zeta Lambda chapter. Since joining the Greek community in 2010, he has been part of discussions to restructure FSC.

“The current (FSC) structure attempts to unite all Greeks in certain events, while not all organizations’ missions or activities coincide with that of the FSC as a separate entity,” Zavaleta said. “DKA’s goals are strictly professional, aimed to develop the next generation of the film industry while Alpha Sig, a social as well as a national organization, is all about connecting with other organizations and the community.”

Although recognizing existing councils can benefit organizations in the long run, it can be difficult to receive the same benefits if it is not recognized.

“When it comes to joint events, it will be easier for groups of organizations to get funding, permits, etc,” Zavaleta said. “If Greeks are only represented by FSC, the fiscal and collaborative events are more difficult and limited and means more work for ASI to distribute funds and more work for the Greek councils to plan group events, etc.”

Members of several Greek organizations, especially national ones, are also required to attend council meetings within their organization, which often coincide with the biweekly FSC meetings.

“It’s hard to balance attending FSC meetings when we are required to attend other council meetings too,” president of Alpha Phi, Alyssa Ortega, said. “Our organization plans a semester ahead, and we want all of our members involved in other activities as well.”

Goals for the remainder of the semester and succeeding terms include promoting Greek life on campus and maximize involvement within the Greek community.

“Recognizing separate councils can help raise awareness of each Greek organization and lessen the intimidation of local organizations versus national ones,” Ortega said.

If approved, the new council structure can go into effect as early as the Summer or Fall semester.

“The council should serve as the exemplary status of the Greek community as a whole and a way to show SF State’s commitment to responsible and conscientious Greeks,” Zavaleta said.

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