Bradley fraternities banned from booze parties

By Anna Yee

February 11, 2013 Updated Feb 12, 2013 at 12:43 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Imagine a typical college frat party, without the booze. Starting this week, that is what Bradley University is enforcing.

"No parties at fraternity houses period," said Nathan Thomas, Bradley's Interim Vice President for Student Affairs.

Bradley is temporarily banning all fraternity parties where alcohol is served. This moratorium means non-members cannot consume alcohol in any of the school's 14 chapter houses or at any social event the fraternity hosts off campus.

Thomas says the move was prompted by an increase of alcohol-related violations, like supplying alcohol to minors, and recent hospitalizations.

"It's fair to say that this is a reminder for the students to remind them why they're here, what's important, and the importance those organizations play on campus," said Thomas.

Bradley's Inter fraternity Council President Alex Kapustka says there is already a rule against freely serving alcohol but it has not been very effective.

"For years, we've been struggling to promote this," said Kapustka, "and so we felt that it was necessary to really flesh out this new policy, educate people on how to we should go about doing it in a way that we can have fun, but be safe and obey the law."

That new policy proposal is a 'bring your own bottle' rule. Those over 21 would supply their own alcohol, so that it is not freely given or shared with minors. It's an idea Alan Bukingholts, the student body president, understands.

"God forbid something happens that a student passes away from an alcohol-related issue, especially being underage of 21.," said Bukingholts. "That would be a very tragic situation."

However, not every student agrees with the way the University is handling the situation.

"It wasn't presented as, 'We have a risk reduction plan,' said Dashawn Cason, a Bradley student & frat member. "It was presented as, 'Until we come up with something indefinitely, everyone's going to have to be on social probation."

Sororities are already required to follow a rule banning in-house alcohol. University officials say the ban in fraternities is expected to be short-lived until a new "risk management" policy is approved.

Fraternities are still allowed events like formals and mixers that are co-hosted by third party vendors. In the mean time, party-goers are expected to follow the rules and put down the booze.

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