Sixteen Interfraternity Council chapters have been banned from all social activities in chapter houses after the Department of Public Safety cited the chapters for unauthorized parties Monday night.
In addition, eight students were taken to the hospital for alcohol poisoning after showing signs of shaking and unconsciousness, according to USC Student Activities officials. Some of those transported to the hospital were underage female students who recently joined a sorority, officials said.
“Clearly, this behavior is unacceptable for any recognized student organization and detrimental for any values based fraternity and sorority,” wrote the Office for Fraternity and Sorority Leadership Development in a letter to the USC Greek community.
All social activities, including planned and informal or spontaneous events, are forbidden until the 16 cited chapters meet with Student Judicial Affairs and Community Standards.
“I feel very disappointed in the breakdown of the risk-management policies,” said Parker Adams, IFC’s vice president for public relations. “This is a good opportunity for us to step back and re-analyze our safety policies.”
Some students said they believe more people attended parties on The Row than usual because Monday night marked the first night after the completion of fraternity and sorority rush. Students are discouraged from attending parties during the rush process by the fraternity and sorority houses.
“It was really the first night that all the freshmen were out on The Row,” said Adam Laufer, a sophomore majoring in civil engineering. “There were definitely bunches of people walking up and down the sidewalks … more than a typical Thursday night.”
In the letter, the Office for Fraternity and Sorority Leadership Development stated that it plans to notify all national parent organizations of the chapters where alcohol poisoning occurred. The university plans to enforce any sanctions the national organizations place on USC chapters.
In a few weeks, all new members of fraternity and sorority chapters will attend retreats where DPS will speak about alcohol awareness — one measure that IFC has already planned to prevent incidents like those that occurred Monday.
“The safety of our community is always number one,” Adams said.