Students Added to Committee Examining Social Group Policy

UPDATED: April 10, 2017 at 1:46 a.m.

Six students have joined the committee tasked with reevaluating the current policy regarding single-gender final clubs and Greek organizations.

Undergraduate Council President Yasmin Z. Sachee ’18, former UC Vice President Daniel V. Banks ’17, Caroline M. Tervo ’18, Shub Chhokra ’18, Mo Y. Kim ’18, and Kacey Gill ’20 are now members of the committee, according to an email from Associate Dean of Students David R. Friedrich.

Several of the students named to the committee have previously voiced opinions on the College’s policy. Sachee, a member of the all-female Bee Club, lambasted the sanctions as a “one-size-fits-all policy” that “gets rid of women’s spaces on campus” at a debate during her campaign for UC in November. Banks, conversely, told the Faculty of Arts and Sciences in November that he believes the policy will help address discrimination on campus. And Tervo spoke at a rally of women’s social groups shortly after the policy was announced, where she praised all-female organizations as “crucial sources of empowerment.”

University Hall
The Faculty of Arts and Science holds monthly meetings in University Hall.

Gill is an active Crimson editorial editor, Chhokra an inactive Crimson editorial editor, and Tervo a former Crimson columnist.

First announced in January by Dean of the College Rakesh Khurana, the committee could potentially “revise or replace” the College’s policy—which, starting with the class of 2021, will forbid members of single-gender final clubs and Greek organizations from holding club leadership positions and athletic team captaincies, and being recommended for several post-graduate fellowships.

The formation of the committee followed months of heated Faculty debate about the sanctions, with some faculty members arguing that they had not been adequately consulted in the formulation of the policy, a charge FAS Dean Michael D. Smith deemed “categorically false”. Several faculty members, led by former Dean of the College Harry R. Lewis ’68, championed a motion aiming overturn the sanctions entirely, though Lewis withdrew the motion after the announcement of the “revise or replace” committee.

Smith announced the faculty and staff members on the committee in March, although he later said in an interview that the list was incomplete.

The committee has met once, according to its co-chair Suzannah Clark, a music professor. The committee tentatively plans to present its findings in the fall of 2017, according to Smith.

“I always, with any one of these committees, put a date on it in which we would like to see reports or recommendations coming out of them, but a lot depends on what happens within the committees themselves,” Smith said in an interview Friday.

At Tuesday’s Faculty meeting, some professors questioned the ability of Khurana, a co-chair of the committee, to remain impartial as the group discusses the potential revision or replacement of a policy he crafted. Smith, who selected the co-chairs, defended Khurana and said he believes Khurana has the ability to be “open-minded.”

—Staff writer Joshua J. Florence can be reached at joshua.florence@thecrimson.com. Follow him on Twitter @JoshuaFlorence1.


–Staff writer Mia C. Karr can be reached at mia.karr@thecrimson.com. Follow her on Twitter @miackarr.

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