By Megan Grindstaff
The National Panhellenic Board of Directors adopted Unanimous Agreement X, a piece of legislation that prohibits the attendance of National Panhellenic Council sorority women at men’s rush events, in November 2011. However, Baylor Panhellenic Council had yet to enforce the policy — until now.
According to the National Panhellenic Council Manual of Information, Unanimous Agreement X’s main purpose is to protect the rights of panhellenic sororities in three ways: defending the right to remain single-sex organizations, denouncing participation in fraternity auxiliary groups like “little sisters,” and reproving the participation of panhellenic women in men’s recruitment.
On April 14, Baylor Panhellenic Council held an informational forum announcing the plan to phase in Unanimous Agreement X over the course of the 2014-2015 school year.
As of fall 2014, panhellenic women will not be allowed to attend fraternity recruitment events, including, but not limited to, coffees, smokers and skeet shoots. Also starting in the fall, panhellenic women will not participate in auxiliary groups, such as “little sisters” or “golden girls.” Women who have already been selected into these groups will be able to serve the duration of their current term. However, a panhellenic member may still be a fraternity’s one allotted “sweetheart” if she is invited to do so. Starting spring 2015, panhellenic women will not be able to endorse membership to a particular fraternity by wearing a rush T-shirt, said Boise, Idaho, junior Sydney Browne, Baylor Panhellenic Council president.
Repercussions for panhellenic women who violate the new rules could include going before the Baylor Panhellenic Judicial Board, notification of the regional and national affiliates of the delinquent woman’s sorority, and social consequences for the woman’s chapter, Browne said.
The panhellenic sororities at Baylor that will be affected by this change are Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Delta Pi, Chi Omega, Delta Delta Delta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Pi Beta Phi and Zeta Tau Alpha. Members of other sororities on campus and non-Greek women are free to attend fraternity recruitment events, should they choose to do so.
Chi Omega faculty adviser and Kappa Omega Tau alumnus Smith Getterman sees the new legislation as a positive move for sororities and fraternities alike. Through his work with the members of Chi Omega and his personal experience as a member of a Baylor fraternity, Getterman said he feels women have no place in fraternity recruitment, nor should they want to have one.
“I think Chi Omega’s women are worth a lot more than that,” Getterman said. “They are worth more than showpieces for fraternity guys.”
Getterman said he does not think the fraternity recruitment experience will be hurt by the removal of panhellenic women.
“It’s not a detriment to anybody’s rush, and if it is, that organization has bigger issues,” Getterman said.
When approached by the Lariat for an interview, associate director of student activities and Greek life Tam Dunn declined and requested a list of questions via email. When provided with a list of nine questions, Dunn refused to answer any of them, but sent the following statement:
“As the adviser to Panhellenic, I am here to assist the College Panhellenic in upholding the Unanimous Agreements as set forth, voted on and binding to all 26 National Panhellenic Conference sororities.”