Wesleyan Suspends Its Only Remaining Fraternity

August 4, 2015

Wesleyan University has suspended its chapter of Psi Upsilon, the university announced Monday, shutting down the one remaining fraternity on campus.

In an email sent to students and faculty, Michael Roth, Wesleyan's president, stated that the chapter was under investigation by state and federal prosecutors for "illegal drug activity," including group purchases of narcotics. The house will be suspended for at least one year, though Roth said the punishment could last longer as the investigation continues. The property will be off limits to all Wesleyan students. 

"Police monitored and interrupted one of these transactions in May, and the police investigation into this activity is ongoing," Roth said in the email. "We will reconsider Psi U’s status after the relevant investigations conclude. The investigations may also result in other disciplinary consequences for those involved."

In September, Wesleyan ordered its fraternities to become coeducational. At the time, the university only had two fraternities on campus. Delta Kappa Epsilon was suspended five months later, the university said, for failing to "take any meaningful steps or make any reasonable commitments toward residential coeducation." In February, the fraternity sued Wesleyan for "discrimination, misrepresentation and deceptive practices." The lawsuit is still pending, but a motion to allow members to move back into the house this year was recently denied. An unofficial off-campus fraternity called Beta Theta Pi was also made off limits to students last year. 

Psi Upsilon agreed to become coeducational, but the house will now be closed before any female students move in. "This turn of events is deeply disappointing for so many of us," Roth said. "It is certainly a blow to alumni and students who care for Psi U, and that includes the new women members who had planned to live there this fall."

Wesleyan has recently attempted to rein in drug use among its students after use of the party drug Molly led to a string of hospitalizations last year. Ten Wesleyan students and two campus visitors were hospitalized in one weekend in February. Many of those who required medical attention used the drug while at a party in the residence of Eclectic Society, a coeducational student organization. Eclectic Society remains on campus, though four students were suspended for selling what police described as a "bad batch" of Molly. 

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