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


School seeks student input at open forum on social event registration

Approximately 20 students gathered in the Hughes-Trigg commons Thursday afternoon to give input to administrators on improving the social event registration policy.

Social Event Registration Coordinator Steven C. Newcomb moderated the forum, but attendees included Jennifer “J.J.” Jones, executive director for student development and programs, and Lisa Webb, associate vice president of student affairs and dean of students.

One concern students had was the policy’s definition of an event and rules regarding which events need to be registered. Sigma Alpha Epsilon President Royce Wilson called the policy “extremely vague,” elaborating that the policy gets confusing when students host off-campus parties that involve a number of students from the same organization, but are not organization events.

According to the registration policy, an event needs to be registered if:

• A student group hosts an off-campus event at which an observer would associate the event with the group

• An off-campus event that is publicized or advertised in any manner, print, online or through word of mouth

• An event where alcohol is consumed or purchased

• An event at a Greek House and/or in University owned residences”

Another concern, brought up by Wilson, discussed how someone in the school was alerting TABC to fraternity- and sorority-sponsored parties, which led to students getting citations.

Newcomb said no one at the university had been notifying TABC, but that an e-mail with a list of events, including time and place, was sent to SMU Police Chief Richard Shafer and other relevant offices.

However, SMU police officer Jerry Norris, representing SMU PD at the forum, informed Newcomb and the audience that Shafer had indeed been e-mailing the chief agent at TABC, as well as the Chief of Police of Dallas, the time and place of organization events at local bars.

Wilson said this was “upsetting,” because no one had informed the organizations.

Newcomb noted that this was not in violation of the social registration policy, as there was nothing stated concerning it.

In response to Norris’ statement, Student Body President Patrick Kobler suggested that if an organization were going to be held responsible for its individual members, then organizations should be granted the same privacy rights as individuals.

The forum also discussed the possibility of having alcoholic events on Thursdays. The current policy states that events “where alcohol may be purchased or consumed may be scheduled between Fridays at 3 p.m. and Sundays at 5 p.m. between the first and last days of classes of each semester.”

Many of the Task Force’s recommendations, he said, are designed to improve attendance in Friday classes. The policy’s restriction on events involving alcohol is designed with the Task Force in mind.

Newcomb stated that there are no statistics concerning Friday attendance right now because that is generally looked at after the spring semester.

Several students said the current policy on Thursday events does not promote student safety. Because there are not SMU-related events, students who go to bars often end up in an uncontrolled environment where they can end up in altercations with others. Alex Holland, the Phi Gamma Delta social chair, also pointed out that more students are going out on earlier in the week because there isn’t the traditionally designated night for partying.

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