The national office of Kappa Delta Rho, the fraternity suspended by Pennsylvania State University this week for three years in the wake of allegations its members posted nude photos on private Facebook pages, had no harsh words for the punishment handed down.
"We respect the university's decision and look forward to working with the university to effectuate improvements in the Greek system on campus," Joseph Rosenberg, national executive director of Kappa Delta Rho, said in a statement. "KDR will endeavor to take any actions necessary to have our chapter retain recognition after the three year period has concluded."
The university announced on Tuesday night that it was shutting down the frat after an investigation showed evidence of hazing, drug use, underage drinking and sexual harassment by some members. The controversy erupted in March after a former frat member told State College police about private Facebook posts that showed nude and partially nude women, who appeared to be unconscious or unaware they were being photographed.
Rosenberg earlier on Tuesday had released a statement from the university’s Interfraternity Council, the student-led group that oversees Greek life on Penn State’s campus, recommending less severe punishment for the frat. But the university overruled the council because of the sum total of the allegations.
Rosenberg had said he supported the council’s assessment and was hopeful the university would have agreed with it. The council had recommended that members who violated policies be ejected and that remaining members undergo sensitivity training on sexual assault and harassment, among other actions.
"We agree completely that the conduct described …is unacceptable," he said. "As stated in the Report of the Inter Fraternity Council, only a few of our members were accused of such misconduct. As we outlined previously, we have initiated disciplinary proceedings to address and prevent future misconduct."
A university spokesman on Wednesday explained what the three-year loss of recognition will mean to the fraternity.
"KDR is no longer recognized as an entity on campus. As a result, they cannot participate in any activities as a group, such as THON or intramurals or Homecoming. They can't take part in anything under the KDR name, they cannot wear their Greek lettters. They cannot mix and mingle with other fraternities or sororities.
The house is a private residence and we have no jurisdiction over it, however the borough does have rules about the number of unrelated people who can reside in a house. Fraternities are an exception to the borough ordinances, however, if they are no longer a recognized fraternal organization -- the borough would be the one to decide how the house should be considered as it moves forward. There are ordinances against boarding houses in the borough, but that determination will have to be made by the borough zoning office."