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Final Club Ties Examined

College Life Committee to Consider Severing Ties


The student-faculty Committee on College Life yesterday outlined a compromise resolution on the College's ties to final clubs. They will vote on the proposal in an upcoming meeting.

The resolution calls for the severing of all ties between the College and the private, all-male social clubs, which have refused to adopt a non-discrimination policy required of all recognized student organizations.

Under the terms of the resolution, these clubs would be asked to pay "a surcharge above and beyond costs for all services rendered by the University or its agents."

Spare a Dime

These services, which the clubs currently receive free, include access to the Centrex phone system, steam heating, alumni records, and use of Harvard property.

Clubs which sign the non-discrimination clause would be approved as official undergraduate organizations.

The review of the final clubs' discriminatory practices prompted the committee to consider organizations such as the Radcliffe Union of Students (RUS) and the Black Students Association, both of which are technically exclusive.

But according to Dean of the College John B. Fon Jr. '99. "RUS has an entirely different historical background from the social clubs." He added that the clubs were founded as places to eat and study before the College offered facilities for such activities, but "history has undone their original function," he said.

Committee members emphasized that the final clubs and the Pi Eta Speakers Club would need to indicate explicitly their willingness to extend membership to women in order to retain College ties.

The resolution, however, does not include the Pi Eta.

Committee member Jake Stevens '86 praised the compromise for its recognition of the club's historical ties with the College. "We don't want the [club's] alumni to feel slapped in the face," he said.

Committee member Victor G. Freeman '84 added, "the clubs do play a significant role in this community, and that is why we should encourage them to change."

Of the two discarded resolutions, one focused only on the practices of final clubs, and the other considered the broader issue of discrimination in all undergraduate organizations.

The compromise resolution attempts to encompass both concerns, committee members said.

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