STILLWATER — Move-in day at Oklahoma State University is two weeks away, but no one will be moving into the Phi Delta Theta house.
OSU has suspended the fraternity until August 2016, citing multiple violations of university and Interfraternity Council policies regarding alcohol and hazing.
The two-year suspension will give the fraternity its best chance to succeed in re-establishing a chapter on the OSU campus, Vice President for Student Affairs Lee Bird wrote in a letter to the Phi Delta Theta national headquarters.
Students who will be juniors this fall seemed resolved to cause problems for the chapter, Bird wrote. They threw a keg party at the chapter house May 9 — while the fraternity was on deferred suspension for hazing pledges.
“There is no reason to believe that their destructive and detrimental conduct will change,” Bird wrote. “Given that those students will not graduate for at least two years, we have concluded that Phi Delta Theta will not be eligible to recolonize on our campus until August 2016.”
OSU spokeswoman Carrie Hulsey-Greene said fraternity officials want to return to campus after the suspension. Hulsey-Greene said she isn’t aware of any individual fraternity members being disciplined.
Jon Rogowski, director of chapter services at the Phi Delta Theta national headquarters, did not return calls Tuesday.
In January, Phi Delta Theta was placed on deferred suspension until August 2015 for “serious hazing violations (paddling).” At least 20 members, including the chapter president, were identified as participating in the paddling of pledges, which caused “severe bruising to the buttocks of at least one pledge.”
The deferred suspension allowed the fraternity to remain on campus as an active chapter while completing a number of requirements. A review committee was formed to meet monthly with fraternity representatives to provide guidance.
Officials with the national Phi Delta Theta organization also were addressing the problems, Hulsey-Greene said.
“We thought they were handling it well,” she said. “I guess they just couldn’t keep out of trouble.”