The Alpha Rho chapter of Phi Kappa Tau is currently under investigation after a leaked email that was sent by a fraternity member surfaced. The email sent to the entire fraternity explained in explicit language “how to mack and succeed at parties,” while constantly putting emphasis on taking advantage of drunk women who attend the fraternity’s parties.
With a subject line stating “[Pledges] Guide to a Successful Fraternity Party,” the email outlined how to go through a night of partying in order to accomplish “The 7 E’s of Hooking Up.” From top to bottom, “The 7 E’s” are “encounter,” “engage,” “escalate,” “erection,” “excavate,” “ejaculate” and “expunge.” The last-resort option, according to the email, is to “GO GET MORE ALCOHOL.”
The email which was signed as “In luring the rapebait,” has already been condemned by the individual chapter and the national fraternity as members of each have responded with the statements on their websites. According to these statements, the Alpha Rho chapter has placed itself on suspension and suspended the member in question, as the investigation remains ongoing.
“We don’t condone this type of behavior and we have suspended his membership pending further investigation,” said Austin Jackson, President of Phi Kappa Tau, in an email to the Technique. “The ideas expressed in this email do not in any way reflect our values or the actions of any of our members. Even though this email was intended to be satire in order to make fun of people that act this way, it is still inappropriate.”
Tech has also put out a statement with regards to the situation that acknowledged the incident and the fact that there is an ongoing investigation into the facts surrounding the email.
“Georgia Tech is aware of this incident, and its Office of Student Integrity is currently engaged in an investigation to determine the facts,” reported an email by Matt Nagel, Director of Media Relations in Institute Communications at Tech. “Phi Kappa Tau’s national office, as well as Tech’s student-led Interfraternity Council, are also reviewing the matter to determine whether to take any independent action. The Institute does not condone this type of behavior and continues to provide resources and education designed to create a supportive campus environment for all students, even those who exercise extremely poor judgment.”
According to Mason Elledge the President of the Interfraternity Council (IFC) at Tech, the investigation is multi-faceted. While both Tech and the National Fraternity are looking into this incident, IFC is also currently debating placing sanctions on the fraternity chapter for violating the Fraternal Code of Conduct.
“We want [the sanctions] to be focused more on the fraternity because when you join a fraternity it’s kind of that group mentality and the group is only as strong as it’s weakest member…we’re trying to make it less of a punishment and more of a reaction that helps them to grow and move on from this experience,” Elledge said in an interview.
According to Elledge discussions began when the email came to light earlier in the week, but IFC will be following their own bylaws and constitution as they work through the violations process. First, a violation letter based on the fraternal code of conduct will be delivered to the fraternity, then, following a judicial board hearing, sanctions may or may not be imposed. The process is expected to take two to three weeks.
Caroline Freeman, President the President of the Collegiate Panhellenic Council (CPC), stated how this incident is really being looking at as a moment for education for all members of both the Greek and campus community. She explained how she was initially both shocked and horrified when reading the original email but also stressed the fact that there are so many available resources available to help students that may find themselves in a situation they may not know how to handle or just need help.
“I know a lot of men in fraternities are saying we want to use this to educate our new members [on] what is a completely inappropriate way to look at or treat a woman,” Freeman said in an interview. “Sororities, on the flip side, I hope will be having those same kinds of discussions [on] how do we want to be treated and what are we going to do and really to start speaking up when these things do happen.”
Both Freeman and Elledge agree that the issue lies not in the fact that the email was sent but that this mindset, which does exist both inside and outside of the Greek community, has not been given the proper attention. IFC is focusing on educational programming to come from this incident that would help the chapter move on as well as get conversations started on this issue.
Other organizations on campus have also responded to this email, which has sparked a campus wide discussion on rape culture and sexual violence both on college campuses and beyond. In an open letter to campus representatives of VOICE, which is the Sexual Violence Prevention and Advocacy Initiative launched by Health Promotion, a unit of Stamps Health Services in conjunction with the Women’s Resource Center, spoke on how the email “directly encourages the use of alcohol as a coercive tool for non-consensual sexual activity,” and described both the email and behavior described within it as “reprehensible.”
- The original email can be viewed here.
- This letter from VOICE was sent to the campus community via GT’s Daily Digest email.
- Phi Kappa Tau Executive Office released this statement in response to the email.
- IFC and CPC released this response for Tech’s Greek community.
- The writer of the email has written an apology letter which can be read here.