For the first time since 1992, Penn State will welcome a new sorority to campus — two, in fact. Penn State Panhellenic Delegates voted last night to reopen two sorority chapters: Phi Sigma Sigma and Delta Phi Epsilon.
“This is such a historic time for the Panhellenic community,” Panhellenic President Meaghan DeMallie said. “Being able to welcome two sororities to our campus demonstrates how much the Panhellenic community is growing, with more women registering for recruitment each year. We are so excited for Phi Sigma Sigma and Delta Phi Epsilon to join our community, and cannot wait to see how they grow in the future.“
The Beta Eta chapter of Phi Sigma Sigma will recolonize this fall while the Delta Pi chapter of Delta Phi Epsilon will be invited to colonize no sooner than fall 2015 and no later than fall 2016. The process of opening chapters at different times is calling “stacking” and is done so that each chapter can receive Panhellenic’s full attention.
“National Panhellenic requires us to open only one chapter at a time, but we also choose to stack because we want each chapter to have all the attention and resources they need while opening,” DeMallie said.
While Phi Sigma Sigma will participate in recruitment this coming fall, the chapter will only make presentations during Open Houses and then drop out of recruitment until after Bid Day. After Bid Day, the sorority will continue with recruitment. The idea is that by the next round of recruitment in 2015, the chapter will be able to fully participate. Delta Phi Epsilon will follow the same pattern.
“I’m extremely excited for Penn State to be welcoming a new chapter and provide a home for even more women who are interested in joining the Panhellenic community,” said PHC Vice President for Membership Kimberly Etzin.
Penn State used to have a Phi Sigma Sigma chapter on campus, the Beta Eta chapter, which opened in 1946 but then closed in 1970. Delta Phi Epsilon also used to be on campus, the Delta Pi chapter, opening in 1960 and closing in 1966. According to DeMallie, both chapters closed because of the “political climate and culture at the time. That time was hard for Greek life nationwide.”