University News

New sorority may soon occupy Harkness House

After a declining Art House vacates the space, a third sorority could come to campus

By
Senior Staff Writer
Friday, January 25, 2013

After years of falling membership and decreasing member activity, Art House, a program house located in Harkness House on Patriots Court, will cease to exist as an organization at the end of this semester. Art House leaders chose to opt out of the housing process this year, making their space in Harkness available to another group this fall.

A new sorority may take the place of Art House, said Kate Tompkins, Greek and program housing adviser. The two current sororities on campus, Kappa Alpha Theta and Alpha Chi Omega, have expressed a need for an additional sorority to satisfy demands from the female student body, Tompkins said. An extension committee has been formed and is currently working to decide which of three potential sororities will join Brown this fall.

The committee consists of the council’s executive board members, the presidents of Kappa Alpha Theta and Alpha Chi Omega, the president and vice president of Greek council and Tompkins, Lena Weiss ’13, president of the Panhellenic Council, wrote in an email to The Herald. The committee will be making a decision Jan. 31 after hearing from each of the three new potential groups next week, Weiss wrote.

“There’s a very specific process you need to go through to bring a new sorority to campus,” Tompkins said. “So they have been going through that process for a year, completely initiated by the two sororities on campus.”

It has not yet been determined whether the new sorority will be given the available space in Harkness or whether the sorority will be residential at all.

“If ResCouncil decides to give the space to the sorority as a new Greek house, they would be moving in in the fall,” Tompkins said. “So the new organization will anticipate beginning their recruitment process at the end of February and end before lottery applications are due.”

Art House currently shares Harkness with members of Technology House, a larger organization. Members of Art House may remain in Harkness as independents, said Audrey Lew ’14, Tech House manager.

“I find it unfortunate that there will no longer be a program house dedicated to the arts,” Drew Weitman ’15, a member of Art House, wrote in an email to The Herald.

Tech House members are meanwhile anticipating the arrival of their new neighbors.

“We always do look forward to meeting with communities,” said Matthew Milano ’13, vice president of Tech House. “It’ll be fun to have a community that’s growing and active as a neighbor rather than a community that was reaching the end of its time.”

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