Zeta Beta Tau (ZBT) will occupy the former Chi Phi house in the fall, a move that will provide nearly double the number of beds available for its members.
After Chi Phi lost its charter last month, Greek Life officials announced that the fraternity’s house was to become the Fraternity Leadership and Service House (FLASH) theme house. Victor Felts, director of the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Life and assistant dean of the Division of Campus Life, said that there were not enough applicants to occupy the theme house, so ZBT asked to move in.
“We didn’t have many people apply to be in the theme house,” said Felts, who said he thought the theme house was a good idea and would have been a beneficial addition to Eagle Row and the Greek community.
With 42 beds, the house at 8 Eagle Row will provide much-needed space for the consistently growing fraternity, according to ZBT President David Ash. ZBT moved into its current house at 17 Eagle Row in 2007.
The house, formerly the Students’ Program for International Cultural Exchange (SPICE) house, has become too crowded to accommodate all the ZBT brothers, Ash said.
“We’ve grown since we moved into the former SPICE house,” Ash said. “The Chi Phi house is much better suited for our numbers.”
ZBT, which received its official charter in May 2007 after 10 years as a colony, leased its current house on a year-to-year basis. Like all fraternities without permanent residences, ZBT will also lease the former Chi Phi house on a yearly basis, Ash said.
But if the fraternity continues to fill the house each year without problems, he said, ZBT should be able to maintain occupation at least until Chi Phi returns. Chi Phi can recolonize and begin seeking to regain its charter in 2012.
According to Felts, ZBT acquired its new residence through the submission of written proposals to the University, which were then reviewed by Campus Life and the Office of Residence Life and Housing. He said there was informal talk among other fraternities about occupying the house, but no action was taken by any of the other parties.
Although a larger house was needed for the growing fraternity, Felts said, the new ZBT house will have to pull in residents who are not ZBT brothers in order to fill the space.
“Not all members are planning on living in the house due to prior commitments,” said Felts, who added that friends of the brothers would be helping occupy the house.
Ash said that because ZBT acquired the house so late in the year, many of the fraternity brothers had already signed leases for off-campus housing, leaving more beds in the house open.
“We’re still talking to a number of people who are interested,” Ash said. “The house will be full, and we may even have to start turning people away.”
Felts said that as of yesterday, ZBT had filled 40 of the 42 beds. If they secure two more occupants by today, the fraternity is guaranteed the house.
As of now, it is not certain who will take over ZBT’s former residence in the SPICE house, according to Felts. Residence Life has asked if there were any other fraternities looking for a house, but Felts said that so far he has received no inquiries.
— Contact Alice Chen