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Posted May 2, 2008
LEWISBURG, Pa. -- The Graduate Trusteeship of the Delta Chapter of Phi Gamma Delta has decided to suspend the undergraduate operations of the FIJI chapter at Bucknell University through at least fall 2008.
The decision followed a four month-review of the chapter by the Trusteeship, which was formally established with the support of The International Fraternity of Phi Gamma Delta. The Trusteeship determined that the "future strength of the chapter required a temporary shutdown." The Trusteeship made the unanimous decision during a conference call meeting on April 22.
"Unfortunately, the Trusteeship felt that at this time, the best option to preserve the long history of the chapter and secure the future strength of the chapter, was to implement our action of last resort and close the chapter at the end of the spring semester, 2008," said a statement from the Trusteeship.
The Trusteeship noted that neither the University nor the International Fraternity mandated the decision.
"It should also be noted that this action is in no way a reflection of the character and strength of the current undergraduate brothers," the statement said. "Each of them has tremendous pride and worked vigorously to avoid the potential shutdown of the chapter. However, we as a Trusteeship felt that some of the existing hurdles that the chapter faced were too great to overcome and the best decision was to close the chapter temporarily and use the break to determine the best plan to re-emerge."
The undergraduate brothers were informed of the decision on April 25 during a meeting at the chapter house.
"This was an extraordinarily difficult decision," said Trusteeship Chairman David Berardinelli '93. "Some of my fondest memories of my time at Bucknell come from my experience at FIJI. I know I speak for many of the thousands of alumni brothers that FIJI holds a very special place in their hearts. Unfortunately, even the strongest organizations experience periods of distress. However, we as a brotherhood have always considered it a privilege to be members of the Delta Chapter of FIJI, and these actions are a reflection of that pride and a statement that we intend to face our challenges head on. The Trusteeship has full confidence that we will re-emerge in the future as a stronger organization."
"FIJI was an important part of my Bucknell experience," added Trusteeship Vice Chairman Mike Benevento ’93. "Moreover, as active alumni of the University, I have taken great pride in working closely with the undergraduate students of FIJI during my numerous trips back to the University over the past year. These undergrads should be commended for the work that they put in to try and push through this difficult period in the chapter’s history."
The future of the chapter remains fluent, according to the Trusteeship. "The only decision thus far is that the chapter will not re-open in its current form come the fall semester of 2008," said the statement from the Trusteeship. "The Trusteeship will continue to work on plans for re-emergence. In the meantime, the House Corporation, which controls the ownership of the chapter house, remains fiscally strong, and many of the alumni have offered an outpouring of support. We have faced many challenges over our 126 year history. The current situation is no different. We as a brotherhood have faced and overcome challenges in the past, and we will do so again."
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