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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 9, 1973)
by Dennis Onnen
Unity. Pride. Responsibility. These are
some of the attributes which UNL
fraternities work to instill in their pledges
through training programs. If they are
successful, the pledges supposedly
become good actives.
"The pledge program helps you adjust
to the changes of going to college," said
Tom Camp of FarmHouse. During his
pledge training, there were "sesssions to
talk over what's going on in college life."
Jim Yanney of Alpha Tau Omega said
the purpose of his pledge program was to
"learn what the chapter expects of us,
learn what the chapter is about, instill
pride, create a close brotherhood and
Although each hous? is free to develop
its own program, they all have basically
these same purposes.
"Progressive" pledge training programs
are being instituted with "very little
structure", according to Dave McBride,
Interfraternity Council (IFC) president.
According to Lynn McHugh of Delta
Sigma Phi, pledges there were consulted
as to how they wanted their training
Pat McGuffey of Sigma Chi said the
program "makes us more responsible
academically and socially. It's a small
analogy to life, coping with situations and
coping with people."
During training, most pledges study
fraternity history and do work around
the house. Some houses have mandatory
study hours until pledges make their
grades (2.0 by most fraternity standards)
or until downslips come out.
Many fraternities have community
service projects. For example, Alpha Tau
Omega gave blood for the Red Cross and
Theta Chi sold honey on Honey Sunday
Pledge classes also have many
entertaining activities. Included among
these are "pledge sneaks" to other
campuses and Friday Afternoon Clubs
(FAC) with sororities
Only one of 50 persons contacted was
disappointed with pledge training.
"I didn't get much out of it. I didn't
care about the history," he said.
:;At the end of nearly every pledge's
trajriing period is an event now referred
to a Help Week. Its purpose is "to draw
together all the things you've been trying
to teach through the semester," McBride
said. "Pledges have reached a peak
In the past, Help Week was often
referred to as Hell Week, and it was
associated with physical abuses,
collectively called hazing.
"The only disadvantage of Help Week
is the concept people still have about it.
Wo have done away with the real physical
ordeal," McBride said.
Talking to new actives, this seems to
be the case.
The five-member IFC Judicial Board
hears all complaints of hazing and sets
penalties if a house is found guilty.
Hazing is prohibitied by the IFC by-laws.
However, no complaints have been
received this year.
FarmHouse's Help Week consists
mainly of "intensified house maintenance
to build pride in the house," Camp said.
Most houses have some sort of house
improvement during their Help Weeks,
including repairs, painting, and general
cleanup. Some houses have speakers while
most fraternities conclude the week with
pledge tests concerning fraternity history.
Terry Wostrel of Tau Kappa Epsilon
reported that their Help Week consisted
of "stuff that was fun." They had bridge,
pitch, and ping pong tournaments. Unlike
most houses, Tau Kappa Epsilon is one of
three or four which have their Help Week
and initiation in the first semester.
"It was Hell Week, not Help Week,"
said one new active. He said his pledge
class got only about four or five hours of
sleep each night, and that by the end of
the week, "you were pretty damn tired."
They also had a "lineup" in which
pledges were placed in a line and yelled
"I didn't like it at all. If they ever did
it again, I'd walk out of there. It created
deep resentment," he said.
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A few other new actives reported
instances of lack of sleep and lineups in
their houses during Help Week.
Greg Spady of Phi Kappa Psi said the
pledges were required to eat a "square
meal." It consisted of a mixture of
ingredients, including lasagna, a raw egg,
mustard and catsup. A drink of warm salt
water was also provided. "It didn't taste
that bad," he said.
Other tasks were required of pledges
during their Help Weeks. For example,
Wes Nieveen of Theta Chi said that he
had to carry change for a quarter and
matches at all times. Many houses
required pledges to dress up for class.
Although some of the "fun and
games" and other activities may be
considered physical or mental hazing, in
only one instance did anyone depledge
because of the activities.
Sororities are on their own in planning
pledge programs, according to Debbie
Danberg, president of the Panhellentc
Association. She stressed
constructiveness, saying, "there is nothing
negative about a sorority pledge
Getting acquainted with UNL and its
Continued on page 4b
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