Crisis Management at Country Club U.

Crisis Management at Country Club U.

The last two decades of the life of Delta Alpha seem, in retrospect, to be a 20-year roller coaster ride.

From 1987 onward, the chapter was swooping in and out of one crisis or near-crisis after another.

Where one might go astray would be in regarding this purely as a problem of the last 20 years.

The seeds of the difficulties were actually sown much earlier than the mid-1980s.

One of the first signs of impending trouble was a growing neglect of the chapter’s alumni.

It would be impossible to say exactly when this began to set in, but by the late 1980s, there was an established pattern.

Alumni who were more than five years or so past graduation would only come to events organized by other alumni.

With a very few exceptions, they would not come to events organized by the chapter.

As time went on, this developed into a further pattern of the chapter choosing to ignore advice given by alumni advisors.

Since no person in such a situation really likes being ignored, the advisor positions became a bit like a revolving door, as one alumnus after another received the silent treatment and then gave up on the chapter.

The relationship between the active chapter and the housing corporation deteriorated into acrimony, and remained that way without much interruption.

Finances also became a looming problem. In several years, the chapter had to fight its way out of severe deficits.

A good year would follow, with debts under control and the chapter living within its means.

Then the cycle would be repeated. There was a great deal of negative press about fraternities.

The presidents of the various chapters on the Western Ontario campus set up a presidents’ council in 1988 to deal directly with the media and community relations, bypassing the existing IFC. It seemed like an odd way to approach the problem.

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