This page contains a record of recent statements and public releases by the IFC.

IFC REVISED SPRING SEMESTER SOCIAL GUIDELINES

1 April 2021
(PDF)

As a result of low case counts and a low positivity rate, the Inter Fraternity Council will once again realign with the University’s COVID restrictions and allow in person activity to occur. Such events must be compliant with University Policy SEC-045 (i.e. 6 person limit indoors, 25 person limit
outdoors with masks and social distancing at all times). To be clear, this revision does not allow for any Tier 1 or 2 events such as mixers, date functions, or parties to occur. The IFC COVID patrol will continue to take place to ensure compliance from all chapters. Additionally, chapters that violate the University policy will be reported to the UJC as well as the IFC-JC where they will be sanctioned appropriately for their misconduct. You can report specific violations to the University using Just Report It or the community portal.

Thank you to all those who sacrificed and did their part to reduce case counts of COVID-19 in the University and Charlottesville community, your efforts do not go unnoticed. This revision to our restrictions aims not to return to normal fraternity activity, but instead to offer members, especially our new members, a chance to integrate themselves into the community in a more personal and enjoyable way. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact IFC President, Andrew Huffman (ash4ew@virginia.edu).

IFC REVISED SPRING SEMESTER SOCIAL GUIDELINES

26 February 2021
(PDF)

The Inter-Fraternity Council is suspending all organized in-person activity effective immediately. We will reevaluate at the end of March if these restrictions can/should be amended. In January, the Inter-Fraternity Council decided to lift the ban on in-person events after seeing widespread compliance with the restrictions in the fall. Since then, there have been multiple incidents of blatant noncompliance and disrespect for the less restrictive rules. Such behavior is irresponsible, and puts the health of the University community and many Charlottesville residents in unnecessary danger.

Going forward, there will be no in-person events in the IFC for any reason (social, brotherhood, new member activities, etc.). Housing and meal plans are the only exception to this mandate. In the meantime, the IFC Governing Board will be working on ways to increase peer accountability and hold chapters accountable for their actions.

IFC POST-RECRUITMENT STATEMENT

17 February 2021
(PDF)

In response to the spike in cases of COVID-19 at the University of Virginia, the Interfraternity Council releases the following statement.

Prior to the beginning of the 2021 spring semester, the IFC worked closely with staff in the Office of the Dean of Students who offered guidance to ensure that our recruitment policies were in compliance with the University’s SEC-045 COVID policy. After a great deal of forethought and consideration, the IFC chose to move forward with an in-person recruitment process with stringent public health guidelines. Our recruitment policies required that any in-person events be limited to no more than 6 people, a mandate that masks were to be worn at all times except for eating, and strict adherence to social distancing. Before recruitment began, these restrictions were communicated in detail to multiple members of each IFC Fraternity. All chapters were encouraged to host virtual events, and in person rush events could only be held after filing with the IFC for special approval by the IFC Governing Board to ensure that each planned small six person gathering followed University policy and city and state guidelines. We provided updates on these plans to staff in the Office of the Dean of Students to demonstrate our transparency and commitment to full compliance with University gathering policy. Additionally, the IFC installed an immediate adjudication mechanism which allowed us to hear and sanction reports of misconduct the same day we received a report with specific details of the violation. 

During the recruitment process the IFC Governing Board met every night to re-emphasize the seriousness of the situation to chapter presidents, and to address reports of COVID policy violations. Some reports were preemptive and allowed the Governing Board to shut down events that would have broken policy before they happened. Student accountability requires individuals to bring violations of the policy described above to our attention. You can report specific violations to the IFC President, Andrew Huffman (ash4ew@virginia.edu) and to the University using Just Report It or the community portal.

Going forward, the IFC remains committed to stopping the spread of COVID-19 and complying with all University guidelines, including the recent ban on all in person gatherings. We will conduct all new member activities virtually until small gatherings are again permitted by the University. The Governing Board will continue to process and investigate all allegations of non-compliance as they are reported.

IFC/ISC 2021 SPRING SEMESTER SOCIAL GATHERING POLICY

26 January 2021

Introduction
We want to thank each and every one of you for doing your part the last few months to uphold a safe environment for the UVA and Charlottesville communities. Your efforts did not go unnoticed, as we successfully returned to and remained on Grounds, and Charlottesville Covid cases stayed relatively low throughout the fall semester. However, now it is more important than ever to maintain compliance with public health guidelines and practice safe habits. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and with your continued hard work, we can inch closer and closer to nearing the end of this pandemic.


Spring Semester COVID-19 Policy

In the Fall, doing our part meant suspending all forms of in-person organization, which proved necessary and effective. With more information and building upon the largely positive behavior exhibited this past semester, the IFC and ISC are revising our policy to be in line with the University’s guidelines. At present, the University allows gatherings of six or fewer individuals, and we are amending the IFC/ISC policy to match that number (more specifics below). The amendment is effective immediately; however, the stringent IFC and ISC Recruitment regulations in place will take precedence during the period of formal recruitment. As the University adjusts guidelines, we will revisit the IFC/ISC policy accordingly.


Implications

The objective of this revision is to maintain engagement within our communities and integrate new members, while prioritizing health and safety. To be as clear as possible, this adjustment prohibits parties or gatherings that conflict with University guidelines (SEC-045) in any
capacity.
The IFC and ISC will enforce this policy with sanctions up to and including recommendation to the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life that the offending chapter has their FOA suspended for the remainder of the academic year. We appreciate your compliance, and know that our short
term accommodations will allow us to return to traditional Greek Life in the future. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact IFC President, Andrew Huffman (ash4ew@virginia.edu) or ISC President, Clare Scully (ccs9rf@virginia.edu).


Guidance and Recommendations

To reiterate, this revision does not authorize Greek organizations to host or organize any events that conflict with public health measures that have been taken by the University, Charlottesville, Albemarle county, or the commonwealth of Virginia. This includes but is not limited to: parties,
mixers, date functions, and formals.


Housing

Greek housing and meal plans are exceptions to this policy. We understand that fraternity men and sorority women are living in close quarters that exceed gathering limits imposed by the University. Although such circumstances comply with Virginia governor’s definition of a household, we ask that you take the same outlined precautions to minimize the spread.


Exemptions

There are no exemptions to this policy. Vaccination and/or having already contracted COVID-19 does not mean you are not subject to the same regulations that govern everyone else. Should you feel you have an extenuating circumstance, please contact Andrew or Clare (emails
listed above).


Recommended Reduction Strategies

Activities:

Per CDC guidance, we recommend choosing activities outdoors when possible. You are less likely to be exposed and/or to contract COVID-19 in outdoor settings. Activities include:

  • Hiking Humpback, the Reservoir, Spyrock, the Rivanna trail, etc.
  • Playing sports on Nameless field, Carr’s hill field, the sand volleyball courts or the tennis courts
  • Grabbing food to eat on the Lawn
  • Going for a walk around Grounds

Additionally, activities at Charlottesville or local establishments that have COVID-19 regulations in place are looked favorably upon. For example:

  • Workout class at Zoom, Purvelo, Formula, Orangetheory, etc.
  • Painting class
  • Bowling at Bowlero Charlottesville

It is important to note that it is possible to make any of these activities unsafe if you fail to follow the basic public health guidelines provided by the CDC and the University. By the same token, if you comply with those guidelines you can make other activities not listed above safe as well. In
doing this we encourage you to use your best judgment and consider not only your own safety, but those around you. A general rule of thumb is that if you’re worried about consequences of engaging in the activity, you probably shouldn’t do it at all.


Pod System:

Public health officials advise that social gathering be limited to a small number of people (a pod) in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19. The premise is to choose 6 or fewer people to gather with on a regular basis and limit your social interaction to those people. Such practices will reduce the risk of spreading the disease and allow for effective and efficient contact tracing. Particularly, the pod system is valuable in instances such as carpooling, where complying with social distancing standards proves difficult. Pods can be created based on living situations, Greek families, or access to transportation. More information on pods or social bubbles can be found here.

General Personal Safety:

  • Wear a mask unless eating or drinking
  • Keep a recommended 6ft distance from others
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Limit time spent with others
  • Please take into consideration, if choosing to drink, be mindful of the way alcohol influences both mind and body. Alcohol can lower inhibitions and impact decision-making. This can lead to greater risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19, even if individuals are careful during the majority of their daily routines. Be sure to keep this in mind and continue to adhere to university guidelines and policies on COVID-19 prevention.

IFC STATEMENT REGARDING THE NATIONAL PAN-HELLENIC COUNCIL

18 September 2020

Please take a moment to read the National Pan-Hellenic Council’s recent statement, which can be found on their Instagram account: nphcatuva.

On Monday, the National Pan-Hellenic Council hosted their annual “Meet the Greeks” event, with the intention of providing a platform of education and unity for the NPHC fraternities and sororities and the Black community at UVA. Anonymous individuals interrupted that event with racist attacks, turning an uplifting and positive event into yet another reminder of the struggles Black students at UVA face on a daily basis. Moments like these should make all of us angry.

The Inter-Fraternity Council stands with the National Pan-Hellenic Council, and we unequivocally condemn acts of racism and hatred like the one the NPHC had to witness on Monday. NPHC fraternities and sororities were created long ago to serve as safe places for Black students to find community; they have had to fight an unfair and difficult battle to serve that purpose, and they have always done so with incredible resilience and strength. The IFC stands in admiration of the NPHC this week and every week.

IFC/ISC JOINT STATEMENT ON THE SUSPENSION OF ACTIVITY

26 August 2020

Effective immediately, the Inter-Fraternity Council and Inter-Sorority Council are suspending all organized in-person activities. This is applicable to all fraternity/sorority sponsored or supervised functions, including formal and informal gatherings. We are making this decision in the interest of protecting the public health of the University and greater Charlottesville community. Greek housing and meal plans are exceptions to this policy. Other exceptions will be rare and made on a case by case basis to be evaluated by both the IFC President, Kyle Riopelle (pkr9xk@virginia.edu) and ISC President, Kat Hall (kmh5cy@virginia.edu). We will revisit this policy in accordance with public health guidance from the University as conditions change.

The IFC and ISC will enforce this policy with sanctions up to and including recommendation to the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life that the offending chapter has their FOA suspended for the remainder of the academic year.

IFC STATEMENT IN SOLIDARITY WITH THE BLACK COMMUNITY

1 June 2020

In the past few weeks, our country has watched in sadness and anger as racist violence claimed the lives of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Sean Reed, Tony McDade, Nina Pop, and many others. Tragically, these names are only the latest of a list which dates back to the inception of our country. Like every other organization at UVA, the Inter-Fraternity Council has been thinking about what our role is in this conversation. First and most importantly, our hearts go out to the Black community at UVA and beyond—most of us cannot imagine your pain, but we stand in solidarity with you now.

Additionally, the IFC would like to share a few remarks and action items.

The IFC recognizes that our space has been one in which Black and Brown people have often faced discrimination. There is no excuse for that, and we are sorry. Today, the IFC is beginning work on a diversity, inclusivity, and equity action plan which we hope to share soon and implement by the start of this fall semester. For now, we are calling on our own members to commit ourselves to go beyond awareness and into genuine allyship. It is not enough to personally abhor racist action and rhetoric—each of us must dedicate ourselves to combating racism wherever we see it. As author Ijeoma Oluo says, “Anti-racism is the commitment to fight racism wherever you find it, including in yourself.” We must not tolerate racism in our organizations, our friends, or ourselves.

The IFC has been a Predominately White Institution for the entirety of its existence. Many of our members come from highly privileged backgrounds, and we have lots to learn, both as an organization and as individuals. Accordingly, we do not wish for our voice to be one of the louder ones in this conversation, but we do believe that we should use our platform to help the people engaged in the important work of fighting racial injustice As such, we will be matching donations to the Legal Aid Justice Center up to a total of $500. The Legal Aid Justice Center is a non-profit law firm in Charlottesville which is involved in advocacy work through their Civil Rights and Racial Justice program. If you wish to have your donation matched, please email your receipt to kyleriopelle@virginia.edu. Here is the link to donate; it only takes one minute.

Finally, we encourage everyone to take some time to review some of the following resources: MILE’s excellent statement and action guide; an article on anti-racist action from UVA student organizer and activist Zyahna Bryant; and a reading list from Ibram Kendi, professor and director of the Antiracist Center. This list is not exhaustive, and critically, it is our own job—not the job of Black and Brown people—to educate ourselves and hold ourselves accountable.

In Solidarity,

The Inter-Fraternity Council

IFC STATEMENT ON THE NOVEL CORONAVIRUS

The following letter was sent to all active members of the IFC on Sunday, March 15, 2020:

Dear Members of the IFC Community,

I am writing to express a few thoughts about the IFC and COVID-19. First and foremost, I hope each and every one of you is healthy and safe, and that your families are as well. I hope you all are finding the resources necessary to manage this difficult time—this email will list some of those resources, and I encourage you to look into them if you need assistance.

Now, onto the primary purpose of this email: The IFC strongly encourages everyone to abide by the University’s recommendation to leave Charlottesville and return to your homes if it is within your means. We are facing a crisis unlike anything that any of us has seen in our lifetimes, and we all have the responsibility to follow the advice of medical experts: that means practicing social distancing, self-isolation, and certainly not engaging in large gatherings.

Why is this so important? Many students believe that because people our age aren’t often critically threatened even if they become infected with COVID-19, there is little danger to continue life as if nothing were different—this is categorically incorrect. If you contract COVID-19, you will almost certainly be okay, and you might not even show symptoms. But just as certainly, you will pass it on to others, and for many such as the elderly or immunocompromised, the danger is life-threatening. Now is the time to think of others more than ourselves.

A few practical measures: all IFC social events are prohibited indefinitely. We will be reassessing periodically in accordance with updates from the University. We will be enforcing this policy.

I know that this sucks, and that it isn’t fair. I particularly feel for fourth years who have had their final weeks unjustly stolen from them, and for international students and members of marginalized communities who may face heightened uncertainty and stress in the days ahead. In moments like these, the right thing to do is rarely the easy one; it would be much easier, and more fun, to return to Charlottesville and celebrate with each other, but I humbly request that you do the right thing instead.

All my best,

Kyle Riopelle

President of the UVa Inter-Fraternity Council