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"Permanent" suspension of UM fraternity, but it could be back in 4 years

Mar 18, 2015

The fraternity's charter was "permanently suspended," but it could be back in 4 years
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Permanent suspension sounds … well … permanent, right?

Wrong.  

Just because the Sigma Alpha Mu international board has voted to “permanently suspend the charter of our University of Michigan chapter” after the fraternity vandalized a ski resort in Northern Michigan, doesn’t mean the frat is gone forever.

The head of Sigma Alpha Mu’s  international board, Leland Manders, says in fact they hope to “recolonize” the chapter in four years. That's the length of time the university says it will withdraw recognition of the fraternity.

Manders says it’s likely that any student who participated in the vandalism will have graduated by then.

In fact they hope to "recolonize" the chapter in four years. That's also the length of time the university says it will withdraw recognition of the fraternity.

And he says in the school’s letter to the fraternity, the university says there are measures members could take to get their chapter reinstated even sooner.     

Those measures include, but aren’t limited to, community service, financial restitution, and identifying the “culprits” who vandalized the hotel room at Treetops ski resort.

The fraternity’s failure to identify which members did the actual vandalism is one reason Sigma Alpha Mu’s leadership decided to revoke the charter in the first place, Manders says.

In a statement, the international board also points out that members didn’t come forward about the vandalism in the first place, nor did they fully cooperate with the investigation.

Even though it may not be permanent, what the charter suspension means is that the brothers will have to move out of the house.

We’re still waiting to hear whether the authorities will press criminal charges against the fraternity members.