Florida State University halts Greek life after student’s death

University president says students must create ‘a new culture’ at the institution 

November 9, 2017
Florida State University
Source: iStock

Florida State University has indefinitely suspended all activities at its fraternities and sororities after the death of a student and an unrelated arrest of a fraternity member on drug charges.

Andrew Coffey, a probationary member of Pi Kappa Phi fraternity, died on 3 November after he was found unresponsive the morning after he had attended a party.

In a separate case, Garrett John Marcy, a member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity, was arrested on 6 November, charged with the sale and trafficking of cocaine.

John Thrasher, president of Florida State University, said that the suspension would remain until there was “a new normal for Greek life” at the institution.

“There must be a new culture, and our students must be full participants in creating it,” he said.

Mr Thrasher also instituted a ban on alcohol at all recognised student organisation events.

Florida State University is the latest US institution to rein in Greek life after the death of a student.

Pennsylvania State University temporarily halted fraternity and sorority parties with alcohol earlier this year after the death of a student in February, while Louisiana State University stopped all Greek life activities for a week in September after the death of a fraternity probationary member.

In July, a Harvard University faculty committee recommended that fraternities, sororities and other exclusive clubs be shut down.

ellie.bothwell@timeshighereducation.com

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