Aw crap. It was announced this afternoon that PiKA’s
charter has been revoked by the school CMU chapter will not be recognized for at least four years. Losing PiKA from campus is obviously a huge loss to the greek community and to the broader social community at CMU in which they played a consistently central role.
Losing PiKA from buggy is devastating. As they proudly and frequently pointed out, PiKA is (by far) the winningest organization in the history of buggy. Their 27 men’s and 11 women’s championships tower over the historical competition. Their presence at the top of the leader board has been a constant throughout the history of the sport and their consistency has played a large role in the stability of our race across its 91 year history.
PiKA’s exit from buggy is just the latest and most painful example of a stark trend in which fraternities at CMU are an increasingly endangered species. Since raceday 2001 DU, DTD, PhiKap, KDR, and now PiKA were suspended or removed from campus, taking their buggy teams off the course as they went. Of course, each of these decisions is a complicated combination of factors we’re not directly privy to. Surely each involves mistakes made by the houses, aggressive enforcement by the school, and some unfortunate situations. The overall trend though, is clear. The school is not worried about losing greek organizations if they stray outside the lines.
In a year that saw all 6 men’s trophies go to independents, it hurts to lose the strongest greek competitor in the race. Buggy was started by the fraternities and its strength derives from the diversity of teams competing. A further consolidation towards the big independents is not healthy for the sport.
As announced by the IFC:
In the interest of transparency with the Greek community, we inform
you that today, April 27th, 2011, the University Committee on
Discipline rendered a decision for the Beta Sigma Chapter of Pi Kappa
Alpha. Based on a hearing relating to an incident in February of this
year, the UDC has ruled to revoke University recognition of the
Chapter for no less than four years. At this time, individuals living
within the 1079 facility will be required to vacate by May 16th, 2011.
No official decision has been made regarding 1079 Morewood Avenue.
Currently, the ability to appeal is still viable. If an appeal is
submitted, the outcome of that decision will be made available to the
broader community as soon as is convenient.
The announcement leaves two glimmers of hope alive, first that there is still the option to appeal. I think that the buggy community would resoundingly support PiKA if they choose to appeal the decision. They are a positive and important player in one of the school’s most cherished traditions. Heck, they even let me take pictures of their buggies these days. Second, the
charter is revoked house is kicked off for 4 years which is an infinite span in the college timescale, but not an unrecoverable one for an organization with the historical depth that PiKA has. Here’s to PiKA making amends with the school as gracefully as they can manage, keeping their history intact and continuous however they can, and getting back into buggy as soon as possible.
Update (June): PiKA has salvaged some of their standing with the university and will remain a recognized organization. They will lose their house for at least 3 years, but can remain a group. This is different than KDR’s situation which did not allow them to organize their members and participate in campus activities. There is no guarantee that PiKA will make it back into buggy this year, but it’s now possible.
Comments on this post have been closed, but further discussion can be found in this thread in the forum.