Tau Kappa Epsilon has been reinstated as a recognized fraternity following a 6-3 vote at an emergency Interfraternity Council meeting Sunday night.
The fraternity was placed on temporary suspension from its national headquarters for in-house reasons in October, and without full support from the national affiliate, the university suspended them, but did not deliver any sanctions.
Six months later, TKE completed a process that MUB officials said usually takes around a year to complete.
“It’s quite impressive,” Sara Pope, the Greek Life coordinator, said. “I wasn’t prepared for such a quick turnaround. They put in a lot of work.”
It started in November after the fraternity, with help from its national group, performed a membership evaluation. At the time, more than 60 males were a part of the fraternity. At the end of the evaluation, less than 30 remained.
Incoming president Gregory Gottlieb, a freshman, said that when the size of the fraternity dropped, the brothers focussed more intensely on TKE’s three vows – love, charity and esteem – and, in the process, allowed it to take care of what was needed to regain recognition.
“In my opinion, the number of brothers decreasing increased productivity,” Gottlieb said. “Every brother contributed in a different way. Without any one of them, we wouldn’t be here.”
TKE became a student organization in November, and began meeting with Pope multiple times a month to work on a plan to become recognized again.
As a student organization, Gottlieb said, they focused on philanthropy and on meeting the requirements for recognized fraternities.
In March, TKE worked with Up Till Dawn, a foundation that works to fight childhood cancer, and the club rugby team to host an event that raised TKE $600, all of which was donated to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
After meeting all of the requirements, TKE brought Pope a 180-page document detailing their goals as a fraternity.
The next day, Pope recommended that the IFC vote to recognize TKE.
One problem: The IFC, which is made up of each recognized fraternity, had already held its final meeting of the semester two days earlier. But Gottlieb and current TKE president John Passero found a clause that warranted an emergency meeting for the voting of TKE as a recognized fraternity.
Passero represented TKE alone at the meeting.
“His presidency was the best thing to happen to us,” Gottlieb said. “They [the IFC] grilled us. And he laid it all on the table.”
Nine of the 10 IFC members were in attendance that night. TKE needed a two-thirds margin to gain recognition. Six voted for recognizing the fraternity. Three voted against it.
The vote makes TKE the 11th IFC member. In the fall, Phi Mu Delta will become the 12th.
“There really wasn’t a good reason to reject them. They did it all,” MUB Director MaryAnne Lustgraaf said. “I think they’ll be pretty successful pretty quickly.”
When TKE was suspended, the fraternity was located at 35 Madbury Road, but most of the fraternity members no longer reside in the house. Currently, the house serves as an apartment complex and has no affiliation with the fraternity. In the fall, Lambda Chi Alpha will move into the house.
“You don’t need a big house with big letters on it to be a good fraternity,” Gottlieb said.
He went on to say that the fraternity recently initiated four new brothers to bring the fraternity total up to 32.
“We’re going to focus on quality gentlemen over quantity,” Gottlieb said. “We want people who are going to contribute.”