The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024

SMU creates party registration policy

It’s Thursday night and you’re dressed up and ready to get on the bus. There’s just one problem- the bus isn’t there.

One of the 36 recommendations President Turner approved from the Task Force on Substance Abuse Prevention in April was a social event registration policy. That policy will be put into place starting this fall.

The main change for parties and events is, according to the policy, events can only take place between Fridays at 3 p.m. and Sundays at 5 p.m., which means no Thursday nights.

“They’re trying to prevent open parties basically,” coordinator of fraternity and sorority life Shannon Sumerlin said. “Any group that has a risk management policy has an invitation process. [At an open party] you are increasing your liability because you never know what is going to happen.”

The social event registration policy requires “an off-campus event that is publicized or advertised in any manner, either in print, online or through word of mouth,” to fill out an application and get approval 10 days before the event.

The committee that will either approve or deny the requests meets every Tuesday at 4 p.m. The Social Event Registration Committee is made up of a member from SMU-PD, from Student Conduct, from SAMSA and two students appointed by the student body president.

“The idea is that you go into the committee on Tuesday at 4 o’clock for your party that will be the next weekend,” Sumerlin said. “It’s not like they are going to take three days to deliberate, it happens there.”

Some of the arguments against the new policy are not with the policy itself, but in the way the policy was created and that it was created without the use of the Intrafraternity Council or Panhellenic Council.

“There is an ocean of new rules not covered by the Task Force report,” president of the Kappa Alpha Order Kevin Joseph said in an email. “It seems to me that the University, without consulting any greek leaders or organizations on campus, created them on its own and is now trying to disguise them as student-generated and student-approved.”

In the Task Force report President Turner said that while SMU will not allow sponsored parties on campus, “SMU will create a Social Event Registration Process for all social organizations to register their events, allowing these groups to be updated as to liability risk, University polices and guidelines of their national organizations.” He did not specify the Friday through Sunday parameters.

Joseph continued to say that these issues are bringing greeks together to help understand the rules. “Great universities rest on a foundation laid by the administration, the faculty, and the students working in partnership,” Powell said. “I hope that will be the case here.”

While this may not fix every problem that SMU has, Joseph believes that it will make it less likely for issues to happen. Ke’Ana Hardy, Coordinator of African American Student Services, was a member of the committee that created the registration policy agrees.

“People are always going to try to get around [the rules],” Hardy said. “But we feel like the rules are so clear. We’re not going to change the culture overnight but we’re trying to promote better choices.”

A copy of the event registration policy and application form can be found on SMU’s website.

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