Penn State leaders to discuss Greek-life reform at national advising conference

November 29, 2018

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Greek-life reform at Penn State and ongoing efforts by both the University and students to cultivate positive change will be the focus of a national panel presentation Dec. 1 by University leaders to the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA) in Indianapolis.

At the organization’s annual meeting, which spans four days, Steve Veldkamp, special assistant to the vice president for Student Affairs and interim director for the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and Danny Shaha, assistant vice president for student affairs, will lead the conversation. They will be joined by members of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, including Evan Ditty, assistant director for training and development; Danelle Del Corso, associate director and Interfraternity Council adviser; and Chad Warrick, assistant director and Panhellenic Council adviser.

During the presentation, the group plans to share insights and progress related to the ongoing efforts at the University to increase student safety, foster positive community change, reduce dangerous behaviors and hold Greek-letter organizations accountable. Penn State leaders have advocated for critically needed national reform of Greek-letter organizations.

The group intends to highlight Penn State’s new measures, including deferred recruitment and enhanced eligibility requirements, creation of a new Office of Fraternity and Sorority Compliance, mandatory programming and education for new and current members, the Community Scorecard and data sharing, as well as the University’s leadership role to bring about change within Greek-letter organizations nationally.

In the past several months, Penn State has been leading conversations at national conferences in which a growing number of college and university leaders indicated broad support for new collective action to make fraternity and sorority systems safer across the country. Discussions from a recent Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) meeting focused on the creation of a database led by Penn State where universities share promising new approaches to managing Greek life; legislative actions on a state-by-state basis; federal anti-hazing legislation efforts; and other vital information that could help advance student safety. Penn State is also leading the development of a national scorecard. To-date Penn State has reviewed more than 200 APLU universities’ websites for fraternity and sorority information, providing a public accounting of various aspects of Greek-letter organizations, such as academic measures, community service and disciplinary actions, to name a few.

Other examples of updates to be shared at the meeting include that in 2018 all four councils — Interfraternity Council, Panhellenic Council, Multicultural Greek Council and National Panhellenic Council at Penn State — report improved, new member grade-point averages since the implementation of deferred recruitment and enhanced eligibility requirements. 

The AFA annual meeting is the largest gathering of higher education fraternity and sorority advising professionals who come together to discuss academic and applied research and best practices on fraternity/sorority advising.

Last Updated December 05, 2018