Policies

Policies

Minimum GPA

Students interested in joining a Greek-letter organization must be a fully matriculated (full-time credit load) undergraduate student who possess over a 2.5 cumulative GPA. First-term freshmen and transfer students are exempt from this requirement. No graduate students may participate, as a roster member, with the chapter. 

All GVSU fraternities and sororities must file this form with the Fraternity and Sorority Life by the end of the second week of each semester to certify compliance with GVSU anti-hazing policies and Michigan State law.

The Michigan Penal Code (Excerpt) Act 328 of 1931

750.411t Hazing prohibited; violation; penalty; exceptions; certain defenses barred; definitions; section title. Sec. 411t.

  1. Except as provided in subsection (4), a person who attends, is employed by, or is a volunteer of an educational institution shall not engage in or participate in the hazing of an individual.
  2. A person who violates subsection (1) is guilty of a crime punishable as follows:
    1. If the violation results in physical injury, the person is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment for not more than 93 days or a fine of not more than $1,000.00, or both.
    2. If the violation results in serious impairment of a body function, the person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 5 years or a fine of not more than $2,500.00, or both.
    3. If the violation results in death, the person is guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years or a fine of not more than $10,000.00, or both.
  3. A criminal penalty provided for under this section may be imposed in addition to any penalty that may be imposed for any other criminal offense arising from the same conduct.
  4. This section does not apply to an individual who is the subject of the hazing, regardless of whether the individual voluntarily allowed himself or herself to be hazed.
  5. This section does not apply to an activity that is normal and customary in an athletic, physical education, military training, or similar program sanctioned by the educational institution.
  6. It is not a defense to a prosecution for a crime under this section that the individual against whom the hazing was directed consented to or acquiesced in the hazing.
  7. As used in this section:
    1. “Educational institution” means a public or private school that is a middle school, junior high school, high school, vocational school, college, or university located in this state.
    2. “Hazing” means an intentional, knowing, or reckless act by a person acting alone or acting with others that is directed against an individual and that the person knew or should have known endangers the physical health or safety of the individual, and that is done for the purpose of pledging, being initiated into, affiliating with, participating in, holding office in, or maintaining membership in any organization. Subject to subsection (5), hazing includes any of the following that is done for such a purpose:
      1. Physical brutality, such as whipping, beating, striking, branding, electronic shocking, placing of a harmful substance on the body, or similar activity.
      2. Physical activity, such as sleep deprivation, exposure to the elements, confinement in a small space, or calisthenics that subjects the other person to an unreasonable risk of harm or that adversely affects the physical health or safety of the individual.
      3. Activity involving consumption of a food, liquid, alcoholic beverage, liquor, drug, or other substance that subjects the individual to an unreasonable risk of harm or that adversely affects the physical health or safety of the individual.
      4. Activity that induces, causes, or requires an individual to perform a duty or task that involves the commission of a crime or an act of hazing.
    3. “Organization” means a fraternity, sorority, association, corporation, order, society, corps, cooperative, club, service group, social group, athletic team, or similar group whose members are primarily students at an educational institution.
    4. “Pledge” means an individual who has been accepted by, is considering an offer of membership from, or is in the process of qualifying for membership in any organization.
    5. “Pledging” means any action or activity related to becoming a member of an organization.
    6. “Serious impairment of a body function” means that term as defined in section 479a.
  8. This section shall be known and may be cited as “Garret's law”.

Grand Valley State University Student Code - STU 2.4.2 Hazing

Hazing: Defined as an act that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or that destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a group or organization. Participation or cooperation by the person(s) being hazed does not excuse the violation. Failing to intervene to prevent (and/or) failing to discourage (and/or) failing to report those acts may also violate this policy.

Fraternity and Sorority Life Expectations on Hazing and New Member Activities

  1. Hazing is not tolerated in any form; neither as part of the new member program nor as acts by individual members of the chapter.
  2. The chapter’s initiation is to be a positive, educational experience for all involved. Names such as “Hell Week”, “I Week”, etc. are prohibited to be used in reference to pre-initiation activities.
  3. New member activities cannot take place between 12:00 am (midnight) and 8:00 am Monday through Friday.
  4. The new member program (membership intake/pledging ceremony/initiation ceremony) is to be no longer than the length prescribed by the inter/national organization. All activities must be completed one week before classes end each semester.
  5. New members shall never be subject to sleep or food deprivation and shall never be required to stay or live anywhere in inappropriate health and/or safety conditions.
  6. Forced, required, or condoned application of foreign substances to the body resulting in lewdness or potential ridicule or bodily harm (i.e. tattooing or branding) is prohibited.
  7. All activities associated in any way with new members must be alcohol and substance free.
  8. All activities associated in any way with sorority prospective members should not involve members/prospective members of fraternities, likewise, fraternity prospective member activities should not involve members/prospective members of sororities.
  9. Due to the nature of intimate association and deliberate seeking of acceptance into a fraternity/sorority by new members, "free will" (meaning someone has agreed to participation in or be hazed) cannot be used as an exception to these policies.
  • All chapters must hand in all social paperwork, when alcohol is involved, no later than fourteen day prior to the event to help with event planning.
  • No events registrations will be accepted, without a very good excuse, after the fourteen day period.
  • If you are doing a social/mixer with one or more organizations, all paperwork from all parties must be handed in at the same time.

Social Host Policy

Third-Party-Vendor-Checklist

Host Event Planning Guide

 

All chapters must procure and maintain, at all times, Commercial General Liability Insurance with limits of not less than $2,000,000 general aggregate and $1,000,000 each occurrence. Grand Valley State University shall be recognized by chapter’s insurer as Additional Insured on a primary and noncontributory basis for all liability relating to the chapter’s activities. The chapter shall provide Grand Valley State University with Certificate(s) of Insurance which evidence the required coverage, as well as copies of the Additional Insured endorsement. Failure to provide a Certificate of Insurance, or the relevant Endorsement, does not waive the Chapter’s obligation to comply with these terms and conditions. National offices can submit this information to Chris McQueen at mcqueech@gvsu.edu

Approved by:

Heather Taylor, ARM
Assistant Vice President ERM & Insurance Programs
(616) 331-2067 email: taylorh1@gvsu.edu

    Grand Valley State University (GVSU) supports its students’ right to assemble and form groups based on a shared mission. The GVSU Office of Student Life empowers students to effectively engage with their communities through intentionally designed and inclusive programs, services and environments. Student Life fosters learning, development, wellness, and success for students at Grand Valley State University.

    Separate recognition guidelines have been developed for Greek-letter organizations due to their complex and unique nature. The Expansion Procedures for Greek-letter Organizations allows Grand Valley State University to carefully manage the growth of its Greek community and help to ensure a healthy, safe, thriving fraternity/sorority community.

    The new member process can be no longer than eight weeks. All new members must be initiated by the first day of final exams. Please plan accordingly.

    The official start date will begin the day you begin the new member process. If you take two pledge/new member classes in one term you can have two separate dates for initiations and two separate timelines. Please notify your new member educator and your national office to make changes.

    There will be no exceptions to this rule.

    Fraternity and Sorority Minimum Member Policy

    In conjunction with the requirements set forth by the Office of Student Life, Fraternity & Sorority Life and the University expects each fraternity and sorority chapter to maintain a minimum of four (4) undergraduate members of this institution in order to be recognized by the University.

    In understanding the demographics of Grand Valley State University and circumstances impacting certain fraternities and sororities, the Fraternity and Sorority Life reserves the right to support and offer assistance to chapters that fall below the four (4) member requirement and have the support of their international, national or regional headquarters. Support for such chapters will be extended on a chapter by chapter basis and will require cooperation and communication from the local chapter and their international, national or regional headquarters when applicable.

    Expectations in such cases shall include but are not limited to the following:

    1. A letter of support for the chapter from its current state, regional or national officer for the continued recognition of the chapter. Letter should include detailed plans of support for the academic year.
    2. A detailed action plan from the chapter to outline their membership intake plan to increase membership signed by the chapter President and Advisor(s).
    3. A letter of explanation from the chapter detailing the contributing factors of their current membership number to help guide their planning for their future growth.
    4. An understanding that the chapter shall not remain under the required number of members for longer than eighteen (18) months.

    The approval from the Associate Director for Fraternity and Sorority Life is necessary in all instances to receive support from Fraternity and Sorority Life, while below the 4 member minimum.

    Advisory Support: Chapters shall have active advisory support from Fraternity and Sorority Life (“FSL”) and a university faculty member, staff member, or CSAL graduate student.

    A professional from the FSL will be assigned to work directly with each chapter. Chapter leadership is expected to meet at least monthly with the FSL Staff Advisor. Chapters may select their university faculty/staff advisor (CSAL Graduate Students are allowed to serve as the faculty/staff position and can be paired with a faculty/staff member) and are encouraged to also appoint an alumni/a advisor from their respective organization. Chapters who are unable to identify a faculty/staff advisor may contact the FSL for assistance in identifying possible candidates.

    GVSU Statement Prohibiting Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct

    Title IX states no person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any GVSU educational programming or activity. Title IX protects any person from sex-based discrimination, regardless of their real or perceived sex, gender identity, and/or gender expression. Female, male and gender non-conforming students, faculty and staff are protected from any sex-based discrimination, harassment or violence.

    The GVSU Title IX Office takes all allegations seriously and works closely with Fraternity and Sorority Life. For more information about Title IX please refer to: gvsu.edu/titleix

    GVSU Student Code of Conduct

    GVSU’s Student Code of Conduct outlines prohibited conduct, including: discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and other forms of sex and gender based violence. All GVSU students and recognized fraternities and sororities are responsible to understand and be aware of the Student Code of Conduct. The Student Code of Conduct, including the following provisions: Sexual Misconduct and Retaliation, are available at: http://www.gvsu.edu/studentcode/.

    The GVSU Conduct Office investigates all matters that implicate the Student Code of Conduct. For more information about the GVSU Conduct Office please see: http://www.gvsu.edu/dos/.

    Fraternity and Sorority Life Expectations on Discrimination, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Misconduct, and New Member Activities

    1. Discrimination, Sexual Harassment and Sexual Misconduct, as defined by the University, are not tolerated in any form; neither by the organization as a whole nor as acts by individual members of the chapter.
    2. All chapter members, each semester, must attend educational programming on compliance with the policies mentioned.
    3. All new members will be required to read, discuss, and attest they have an understanding of the meaning and scope of, as well as the principles and recommendations for bystander intervention.

    Alcohol and Other Drugs Policy

    The Student Code applies at functions, activities, or events hosted by Registered Student Organizations, on or off campus. The Fraternity & Sorority Life Alcohol & Other Drugs Policy supplements the provisions of the Student Code and other documented University Policies.  

    This policy applies in any situation sponsored or endorsed by a fraternity or sorority at Grand Valley State University, including those occurring on or off campus. If the inter/national organization of a fraternity or sorority at Grand Valley State University has policies that are more restrictive than this policy, the fraternity or sorority must comply with the more restrictive policy.

    1. The organization, its members, and guests must comply with all federal, state, and local laws.
    2. No person under the legal drinking age may possess, consume, provide, or be provided alcohol.
    3. The organization, its members, and guests must follow federal, state, and local laws on the illegal use of drugs and other controlled substances, including marijuana. No person may possess, use, provide, distribute, sell, or manufacture illegal drugs, other controlled substances, or drug-related paraphernalia.
    4. Alcohol may only be present if (a) provided and sold on a per-drink basis by a licensed and insured third-party vendor or (b) brought by individual members and guests (i.e. BYOB).
    5. Common sources of alcohol, including bulk quantities (e.g. kegs, cases of beer, “handles” and fifths of liquor, etc.), are prohibited unless provided and used by a licensed and insured third-party vendor to sell alcohol on a per-drink basis.
    6. Alcohol may not be purchased with organizational funds or funds pooled by members or guests (e.g. admission fees, cover charges, funds collected through digital apps, etc.).
    7. The organization may not co-host, co-sponsor, or in any way participate in an event or activity with a registered student organization (RSO) or other entity (e.g. athletics team, club sports team, organization not affiliated with the university, etc.) that purchases or provides alcohol.  
    8. The organization may not co-host or cosponsor with a bar, event promoter, or alcohol distributor; however, a chapter may rent a bar, restaurant, or other licensed and insured third-party vendor to host a chapter event.
    9. Attendance by non-members must be by invitation only at any event where alcohol is present, and the organization must utilize a guest list.
    10. Alcohol may not be present if the event or activity relates to the new member joining process (e.g. recruitment, rush, intake, etc.).
    11. Alcohol may not be present if the event or activity relates to new members or their initiation into the organization (e.g. new member meetings, rituals, “bid night,” “Big/Little” events or activities, “family” events or activities, new member presentations, etc.).

    The organization, its members, and guests may not permit, encourage, coerce, glorify, or participate in activities involving the rapid consumption of alcohol, such as drinking games (e.g. beer bongs or funnels, taking shots).

    Philosophy on Alcohol and Other Drugs

    Grand Valley State University values excellence, integrity, inquiry, inclusiveness, community, sustainability, and innovation.  The university promotes a fraternity and sorority life experience that enhances these values by focusing on a students’ personal growth, academic achievement, diverse community involvement, and development of lifelong friendships.  

    Paramount to the fraternity and sorority life experience is the health, safety, and well-being of all community members.  

    We believe that the misuse and abuse of alcohol and other drugs prevents our community members from realizing their full potential as citizens and exemplifying the values of both their inter/national organization and the institution.

    We believes strongly in the power of a positive fraternity and sorority experience to enhance students’ holistic development and support their success. Seeking to promote a healthy university community and positive fraternity and sorority life experience, we uphold the following philosophy on alcohol and other drugs:

    • We expect our students to follow federal, state, and local laws regarding alcohol and other drugs.
    • To address the negative behaviors associated with the misuse and abuse of alcohol and other drugs, the University collaborates with chapter and governing council leaders, as well as inter/national organizations.
    • Through education, training and advising, the University provides our students with the tools to make good choices and to understand the consequences of their choices.
    • The University holds chapters and individual students accountable for the choices they make.
    • We expect our students to take responsibility for their actions and inactions.
    • We empower our students to self-govern and hold their peers accountable for choices that fail to exemplify our shared standards.
    • We expect all members of our community to demonstrate a concern for the health, safety, and well-being of others.

    This was composed and approved in Winter 2019 by Fraternity and Sorority Life Task Force representatives from the following: Greek Life Board, Interfraternity Council, Panhellenic Association, Multicultural Greek Council, Black Greek Council, Student Senate, Alcohol and Other Drug Education Services, GVSU Division of Inclusion and Equity, GVSU Office of Conduct, GVSU Fraternity and Sorority Life, GVSU Alumni Relations, GVSU Young Alumni Board and representation from a faculty member, graduate student, and chapter advisors.

    Academic Success Plans for Non-Compliance with Academic Standards

    A chapter below the academic requirement (2.5) will be automatically assigned Academic Plan Level One status. For each additional semester a chapter is below the academic requirement, and does not improve by .10 (therefore remaining on the same plan level), the next level will be assigned. Each success plan remains in effect as the next level is added to the previous sanction(s). All success plans shall remain in effect until the organization has met the academic requirement, in which case the chapter is no longer on an Academic Plan Level.

    Level One

    • Chapter developed written plan for scholastic improvement
    • Midterm grade report due to FSL

    Level Two

    • All level one activities
    • Chapter developed individualized plan for scholastic improvement for each member
    • Bimonthly attendance at professor’s office hours, or meeting with Student Academic Success Center staff

    Level Three

    • All level two activities
    • Ineligible for Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Recognition, Chapter of Excellence Awards and Student Life Awards
    • Loss of participation in Fraternity & Sorority Life/Office of Student Life-sponsored Homecoming, Greek Week activities, and member attendance in AFLV

    Level Four

    1. Loss of University Recognition