Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

New Rule at Pitt Delays Pledging to Fraternities, Sororities

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

New Rule at Pitt Delays Pledging to Fraternities, Sororities

Article excerpt

University of Pittsburgh students will no longer be eligible to pledge fraternities or sororities until they have earned at least 12 academic credits, a move that would appear to significantly reduce the number of first-semester freshmen who can rush, officials confirmed today.

The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life within the Division of Student Affairs at Pitt said the move is part of a wider attempt to bolster academic readiness of those belonging to fraternities governed by Pitt's Interfraternity Council (IFC) and sororities governed by the Collegiate Panhellenic Association (Panhel).

Pitt said in a statement that the move is effective immediately.

The statement did not address whether advanced placement courses earned by students while still in high school would count toward fraternity membership. John Fedele, a Pitt spokesman, said he would inquire further about that.

Conduct by fraternity members has made negative headlines nationally of late following incidents at Penn State, the University of Oklahoma and elsewhere. Pitt said the announcement is not tied to those issues.

"This policy is designed to allow first-year students with an opportunity to get acclimated to college life, both academically and socially, before having to make an important decision about engaging in the formal process of joining one of our fraternities or sororities," read the statement from Linda Williams-Moore, director of Pitt's Office of Cross Cultural and Leadership Development. "It enables students to make a more informed decision about which organization is best for them, and gives our first-year students every opportunity to get off to a good start academically, and become well-adjusted socially, before joining a fraternity or sorority."

Pitt already requires that fraternity members maintain at least a 2.5 grade point average. …

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