West Virginia University placed a moratorium on all Greek activities Thursday after a "catastrophic medical emergency" occurred at one fraternity chapter and 19 students were cited at another. Last week, Morgantown police arrested three students and cited 16 others for underage possession and consumption of alcohol. All 19 students were pledges of Sigma Chi, and the chapter was suspended. The medical emergency occurred at a separate house early Thursday and required a 911 response, the university said in a statement. The university referred to the student as "gravely ill," but many on campus took to social media on Thursday offering their condolences and saying that the student had died.
The moratorium comes three weeks after the university moved to quickly expel several students involved in a riot near campus -- and at a time when its president, E. Gordon Gee, is trying to clean up the university's hard-partying image. West Virginia joins a growing number of universities, including Johns Hopkins University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, that are imposing systemwide bans of Greek parties and social functions following incidents at one or two houses. "The action to halt fraternity and sorority activities while these matters are being reviewed is being done with the well-being and safety of our students in mind," Corey Farris, dean of students at West Virginia, said. "That is -- and must always be -- our foremost priority."
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