View Full Version : Sigma Psi @ Catholic University of America?

10-28-2014, 01:24 PM
I saw this change on Wikipedia and couldn't figure it out after googling both cua.edu and kappasigma.org

What's with Sigma-Psi chapter that they went from being at Catholic University of American to being for "Washington DC"?

10-28-2014, 07:29 PM
Like several other ... far too many ... Kappa Sigma chapters and colonies, Sigma-Psi Chapter is not formally recognized by the school its members attend ["the School"], in this case The Catholic University of America. So in the directory of active chapters and colonies on the Fraternity Website, the powers that be in the Fraternity has chosen to state the geographical location of the School beside the name of the colony or chapter rather than the name of the School, until that colony or chapter obtains formal recognition. This is done to preclude legal action by the School against the fraternity. Sometimes that status is short-lived; other times it can last for years. Once formal recognition has been obtained, the name of the school is substituted for the geographical location.

Surviving without formal recognition is difficult. Some colonies find it too difficult to survive without recognition, and fold. Some colonies do survive well enough to receive chapters as active chapters, but cannot continue to survive in a competitive Greek environment as an unrecognized chapter. Kappa Sig has lost formally unrecognized colonies and chapters. Other unrecognized chapters thrive, or at least maintain. Kappa Sig has several such chapters. Hopefully, Sigma-Psi will prove to be one such chapter until it receives formal recognition by The Catholic University of America.

Kappa Sigma is not the only fraternity that recognizes colonies and chapters at colleges and universities that have withheld or not granted recognition to those groups. Some of those other fraternities likewise denote the location of a colony or chapter not recognized by the School by its geographical location; others are bolder and denote it by the phrase "not officially recognized by the School" or "not officially affiliated with the School", thereby telling all readers what the name of the School without claiming recognition by or affiliation with it. I wish Kappa Sig would also do this. It is particularly helpful to readers if the School is located in a city which has several colleges or universities. When an unrecognized Kappa Sig colony is described as, for instance, the Philadelphia colony or XY colony is stated to be at "Los Angeles, CA", the reader is left to try to figure out the name of the School.

The Wikipedia listing of chapters and colonies is different. Wikipedia fraternity articles and chapter listings are not part of or associated or affiliated with that fraternity or any multi-fraternity organization like the NIC. Its contents are submitted by contributors. Sometimes the submitted info is incorrect. But in any case, the contents can be and are what the contributors choose it to be. The Kappa Sig chapter and colony listing, like those of many other fraternities, contain all sorts of info that is not found on the fraternity's own website. One common example is the inclusion of inactive/dormant chapters. Many fraternities and sororities purposely do not list such chapters on their websites ... they don't want readers/viewers to know how many inactive/dormant chapters they have or where they are located; they regard such information as negative whereas they are engaged in only providing what they regard as positive, promotional information. This, of course, is rubbish, and any fraternity or sorority wanting to provide complete information to its members and other interested parties will list both active and inactive chapters. Fortunately, many fraternities still do so ... but fewer all the time.

Kappa Sigma is one such fraternity that, at present at least, does not list ctive/dormant chapters, either as part of one comprehensive, historical list of all chapters, or as a separate list along with a corresponding list of active chapters. Not does it announce closures. Closed colonies and chapters simply disappear, without announcement, from the active chapter and colony list.

Fortunately, however, the Kappa Sig chapter and colony list on Wiki is much more comprehensive, and thus much more informative, than the Fraternity's website list. It lists ALL chapters historically (i.e., in order of chartering) and all active colonies, along with other information. The school at which each chapter or colony is located is set out, regardless of whether or not the chapter or colony is formally recognized by that school. That is why the Sigma-Psi chapter was stated to be located at The Catholic University of America. Earlier today, someone who is not a regular contributor changed that designation to "no university affiliation", which may be true but is not in keeping with the list's practice of identifying the School, whether official recognition has been granted or not. In both cases, the geographical location, Washington, DC, is also stated. Someone else has since restored the designation to The Catholic University of America, making it once again consistent with the 400+ other line entries in the list.

Of course, the person who changed the listing could go back into the list a second time and change it again. But if he does, I suspect strongly that someone else will again restore the original listing so as to maintain the integral characteristics/features of the list. Meanwhile, the Fraternity website will continue to show the chapter as being located at Washington, DC without naming the school, until either (a-) the chapter gains formal recognition, (b) the chapter closes, or (c) the Fraternity changes its policy as to how it deals with the listing of formally unrecognized chapters and colonies.

10-29-2014, 01:05 PM
That was as complete an answer as I could have possible hoped for. What I would like to see is the status field for those chapters changed from Active to something else like
Active - No Formal Recognition or Active - No School Recognition or Active - NFR (City name)

My Fraternity (Alpha Phi Omega) has done the same change, but I got everything into Wikipedia first *and* on most Fraternity websites there is a drop down menu on the page for getting alumni to donate money that has the complete list. (May not be true for a chapter at a school that's been gone since the 19th century, but my fraternity was founded in 1925.