Student engagement enhances the academic experience by fostering the development of critical thinkers, ethical leaders and engaged citizens at Kenyon and beyond through programs, services and educational opportunities.
These organizations contribute positively to the campus, adhere to expectations for the entire Kenyon community, and abide by all college policies governing both individual students and student organizations. Groups of students not chartered by the College may not affiliate themselves with Kenyon, the Office of Student Engagement, or other official college organizations. This policy sets forth the rules governing the conduct of student organizations, including Greek organizations. Matters pertaining to student organizations are handled by the Office of Student Engagement and/or the respective governing council. Reference the Student Organization Handbook for additional policies and procedures related to student organizations and other Office of Student Engagement functions.
Individuals who join together as a student organization to share common interests and purposes also collectively share a responsibility to themselves, their organization, and the College. The organization must ensure that members acting individually or as a group reflects the College’s regulations in addition to all other outlined expectations from the Office of Student Engagement. Organization leaders bear a special responsibility for ensuring that members understand and act in accordance with these policies and procedures. All student organizations accept responsibility for the actions of their members and alumni related to the organization.
As a guiding principle, organizations will be held responsible for the acts of their members and alumni when those acts are the result of or are in any way related to the organization. Isolated violations of individuals should not be chargeable to the group, but evidence of group misconduct exists when:
Cases involving student organizations are not considered confidential under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Therefore, the College does not protect the confidentiality of the disciplinary records regarding conduct of student organizations.
Each student is subject to a student activity fee of $150 per semester. This fee is allocated by the business and finance committee (BFC) of Student Council for any student organizations recognized by Student Council and Campus Senate. The amount of this fee is established by recommendation of the student body to the Board of Trustees. The BFC allocates the majority of funds to approved groups at the end of each semester for the following semester. The BFC also has supplemental budget meetings every other week throughout the semester for additional funding requests.
Funding may only be used for the purposes for which it was requested, and a repurposing of the funding must be approved by the BFC chair(s). It is the responsibility of student organizations to notify the BFC of any changes relating to an event, including, but not limited to, co-sponsorship, cost and use of funds or coordination with other campus groups before the event takes place. All information provided in budget requests and communications with the BFC chair(s) is expected to be truthful and complete. The BFC will not fund any events involving the consumption of alcohol or directly relating to any academic assignment, assessment or exercise for which an evaluation will be given to a student(s). A complete listing of BFC bylaws is available on the Office of Student Engagement website. Failure to comply with any bylaws will result in a review of the funding for an event and may result in sanctions including, but not limited to, withholding of funds, request for reimbursement, a semester suspension from eligibility for funds, and referral to Student Conduct.
Under limited circumstances, the Office of Student Engagement, in consultation with a given student organization, may determine that outside involvement by members of the extended Knox County community will serve to enhance Kenyon’s mission and the mission of the student organization. Student organizations desiring such involvement by outside individuals must seek written approval by the director of student engagement and comply with any conditions specified, including, but not limited to, the signing of release forms and acknowledgment of Kenyon’s student organization policies and procedures.
Under no circumstances may an outside individual be an officer, voting member, or have any other membership status or authority within the organization, as Kenyon student organizations are to be run and governed by Kenyon students only. The student organization will be held responsible for all conduct occurring at its meetings or events, whether by members or outside individuals.
Outside individuals are expected to adhere to all College policies and procedures. The Office of Student Engagement may remove any outside individual for behavior that does not align with the mission of the College or the organization.
All student and student organization events are required to obtain public performance rights when exhibiting copyrighted materials, such as films, scripts, music and technology-based works such as computer programs and electronic databases. A public performance is one that occurs “in a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered.” (Federal Copyright Law, Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 10). A public performance also occurs when the performance is transmitted by means of any device or process (for example, via broadcast, telephone or other means) to the public.
In order to perform a copyrighted work publicly, the organization must obtain performance rights from the copyright owner or his/her representative. Public performance rights are the legal rights to publicly show a film or video (media). Unauthorized public performances refer to any showing of a movie or performance of a play/musical without first obtaining the required permission from the copyright owner. This legal requirement applies regardless of whether an admission fee is charged, whether the institution or organization is commercial or nonprofit, or whether a federal or state agency is involved.
The acts of translating or adapting a work protected by copyright also require authorization from the rights owner. Translation means the expression of a work in a language other than that of the original version. Adaptation is generally understood as the modification of a work to create another work or the modification of a work for different conditions of exploitation.
Exhibiting copyrighted materials without appropriate performance rights may result in suspension of funding, referral to Student Conduct, and/or legal penalties.
Greek life at Kenyon has been an important part of the Kenyon experience since 1852. Greek organizations give students the opportunity to develop friendships across campus, build a support and resource network during and beyond their college experience, and make a significant impact on the local and global community. Members of Greek organizations are involved as student leaders throughout the curricular and co-curricular experience and represent the values on which their organizations were founded. Greek organizations exist in a mutually beneficial relationship with Kenyon College by invitation of the College. Kenyon College recognizes the social opportunities provided by Greek-letter organizations and encourages activities that foster sound social development. Fraternities, sororities, and societies embrace and uphold the expectations for responsible student conduct, following the stated guidelines and policies which govern all Kenyon College students. Greek organizations and members are also expected to abide by all policies and guidelines of their inter/national organizations.
Joining a Greek organization brings about a lifelong membership with benefits beyond your undergraduate experience. Alumni networks and opportunities allow continued support throughout the development of members’ careers.
Students may not join a Greek organization if they 1) have lower than a 2.000 cumulative grade point average, 2) are currently on conditional enrollment, or 3) have been advised to withdraw from the College in the past semester.
Alcoholic beverages are prohibited at any recruitment or new member education event. Each fraternity, sorority and society, its individual members and all unaffiliated students participating in recruitment and new member education activities are responsible for abiding by the College’s alcoholic beverage regulations and Ohio state law. Greek Council and Office of Student Engagement will address any violations of the recruitment policies and/or procedures and refer for further judicial review/sanctioning as appropriate.
Any founding of a new organization requires the approval of the Greek Council, the Campus Senate and the president of the College. Those organizations with inter/national affiliation who wish to exist at Kenyon should work with the Office of Student Engagement to verify that the policies governing inter/national expansion/extension and the expectations outlined herein are met when applying to Greek Council for recognition.
To be recognized, an organization must have adopted aims or actions which do not violate the civil rights of members of the College or Kenyon regulations; have an advisor who is a member of the Kenyon administration, faculty or staff; have a minimum membership of 10 members, of which all must be current Kenyon students; and have a purpose and goal consistent with the values of the Greek community.
After having met with Office of Student Engagement staff, a formal petition must be submitted to the administrative advisor of Greek Council. A representative must come to the Greek Council general session to present the petition. After a brief question-and-answer period, the Council will vote to approve or deny the organization. A two-thirds majority of the member chapters is required in order to grant the new chapter a year-long probationary period.
At the conclusion of the new chapter’s year-long probationary period, the Council will vote to approve or deny membership to the Council. A two-thirds majority of all member chapters is required for acceptance to grant the new chapter recognition. Should two-thirds of the member chapters fail to ratify the new chapter, a two-thirds vote of the general session may extend the probationary period for another year. This may be done for a maximum of three years. Once the new chapter has been approved by the council, it must then receive final approval from the Campus Senate and the president of the College for the recognition to be verified.
Each semester, Greek organizations interested in recruiting new members will coordinate a recruitment process, in which any current Kenyon student is invited and encouraged to meet fraternity, sorority and society members and participate in fraternity, sorority and society activities. Upperclass students may participate in recruitment during the fall and spring semesters. First-year students are subject to deferred recruitment and, therefore, no first-year student may participate in recruitment activities during the fall semester or join a Greek organization before the official period of new member education has begun in the spring semester. Although there is bound to be interaction between Greeks and first-year students during the fall semester, no organization or initiated member shall engage in any form of active membership recruitment prior to the formal recruitment period. A membership recruitment function is defined as any event including primarily activities for first-year students or other potential members.
Greek organizations participating in fall and/or spring recruitment are subject to the following policies:
All applicable federal, state, and local laws will be enforced related in regard to hazing. A schedule of new member education activities must be submitted by each Greek organization to the appropriate Greek Council officer and the Office of Student Engagement by the deadlines specified in the Greek Council constitution. Should circumstances arise in which an organization is unable to keep exactly to its approved schedule, the appropriate Greek Council officer and the Office of Student Engagement must be informed at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled start time for approval of any change.
When a new member accepts a bid to an organization, one will be asked to complete and sign a new membership verification form to confirm bid acceptance and also release FERPA protected information to the organization. A new member will not be recognized by the College until the membership form is completed and submitted to Office of Student Engagement. New members will not be permitted to begin their new member education process until the membership form is submitted. An individual may not be a new member of more than one fraternity or sorority. Individuals many become new members of a society in addition to a fraternity or sorority.
The new member education period officially starts at 5 p.m. on the Friday immediately following the deadline for which bids are due. Specific start times will be provided to all Greek organizations and must be adhered to by all members of the organization. No new member education activities (formal or informal) may occur prior to this day and time. All new members must be initiated by the third Friday before the last day of class each semester. No new member program may be longer than eight weeks (not including spring break).
Activities may be scheduled for any day of the week. All new member education activities must be approved by the Office of Student Engagement and must end by midnight, Sunday through Thursday, and by 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Activities must be limited to the immediate campus and recognized Greek organization locations. For any other requests, special permission must be given in advance by the Office of Student Engagement. Activities must allow for a minimum of six continuous sleep hours per night. New member education activities cannot begin earlier than 6 a.m. on Sunday through Thursday and 8 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. All efforts must be made to avoid disturbing or unnecessarily inconveniencing members of the community by a new member education activity.