Colgate University demanded that all the Greek organizations sell their houses to the college or the chapter would be banned. Any student participating in a banned chapter may be suspended or expelled. Most of the fraternities and sororities did sell their value real estare, claiming they had "a gun to the head" and no choice but to bow to Colgate's bullying tactics. Here is the status of four lawsuits filed as a result of the coercive action of Trustee Chairman John Golden, President Rebecca Chopp et al.
A derivative lawsuit was filed in the Supreme Court of the State of New York October 19, 2005. A copy of the suit may be viewed at www.sa4c.com.
On Dec. 15, 2005, Colgate filed a Motion to Dismiss, based on their claim that three of the plaintiffs are not alumni members of Beta Theta Pi. This was, in fact, correct. Since then, we have worked hard to recruit several more plaintiffs and now have more than the requisite number to respond to the motion, which is due February 3, 2006.
The Beta case has been strengthened beyond what was alleged in the Phi Delta Theta case. (The Phi Delt case was dismissed, but is now under appeal.) The primary causes of action in the Beta complaint relate to Colgate University’s coercive land grab and their breach of implied contract with the undergraduates.
The Delta Kappa Epislon (DKE) lawsuit claims an anti-trust violation based on Colgate’s attempt to create a monopoly on housing. This case is through the discovery phase and will be back in court in early February. Financial forensic and real estate experts were retained to help make the case. Documentation at least 5” thick proves that Colgate’s land grab is “all about the money.”
DKE refused to sell their house and Colgate closed the chapter. All DKE undergraduates are now living in university owned housing, as the college requires. But, their chapter has still been banned, even though the students have not violated any college policies. This discriminatory action is the basis of the DKE undergraduate lawsuit.
Colgate has put the legal framework in motion to not only own all the valuable real estate around the college, but to rid themselves of Greek life without “just cause” and with no appeal process.
"It is contemplated that policies, procedures, rules, and regulations governing the Broad Street Community will evolve and change over time as circumstances require. Accordingly, these matters shall not be deemed as contractual and Colgate reserves the right to change all requirements, policies, rules and procedures without prior notice, in its sole discretion." ( From the Contract to Sell between Colgate University and each Greek alumni organization.)
We’re seeing evidence of their agenda. DKE undergrads, who are now living in university-owned housing, have had their chapter banned without “just cause” because as Rebecca Chopp said recently at an alumni gathering, it was determined that “no off-shoot” groups should exist at the college. And, Colgate now says that non-Greek members may live in Greek houses. (www.colgate.edu
- student life, housing options, Broad Street Community)
Unless we stop them. That’s the focus of the lawsuits. When the legal action is successful, it will call into question all the sales agreements between the several chapters and Colgate and force the college to revisit their policies.
Students & Alumni for Colgate, Inc.