The University’s investigation of Troy’s Lambda Chi Alpha chapter “found no evidence of conduct violations, and the fraternity has been cleared to resume normal activities effective immediately,” according to a statement from Troy’s University Relations department.
The investigation was officially concluded and the decison was announced by the University and Lambda Chi’s national headquarters on Tuesday, Oct. 3.
For the chapter’s safety, national headquarters placed it under limited operations during the investigation, said Tad Lichtenauer, director of communications and information technology at the national headquarters, on Wednesday morning, Oct. 4. “We’ll be removing them from that status today.”
The investigation began on Monday, Sept. 18, following an allegation of improper conduct related to new-member initiation, according to the University’s press statement. The fraternity was asked to cease all activities while the investigation was conducted by Dean of Student Services Herbert Reeves in conjunction with the Office of Student Involvement.
“Troy University takes seriously any allegations of misconduct associated with student organizations, and members of the fraternity fully cooperated with University officials during this investigation,” the University press statement read.
“Now that the investigation is over, I think that it really just shows how we are a good fraternity, and there was nothing valid about the allegations,” said Joe Payne, a senior economics major from Skipperville and president of Troy’s Lambda Chi fraternity.
Payne and the university did not say what the specific allegations against the fraternity were or who brought the allegations forward.
Unlike some other fraternities, Lambda Chi Alpha operates without a traditional pledgeship.
A pledgeship describes a period of time after a student is selected for the fraternity but before being approved for membership. During this time, pledges must usually prove themselves as worthy members of the organization.
Instead, Lambda Chi employs an Associate Members Program for prospective members.
“Associate Members are those students who have been accepted for association by a Chapter, but who have not participated in the Initiation Ritual,” according to Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity’s 42nd edition of its constitution and statutory code.
Payne explained that associates have similar rights to brothers and attend chapter meetings, adding that Troy’s chapter currently has over 20 active associates.
Payne said associates must prove themselves as Troy students, which is what they are, first and foremost.
“If they’re a successful Troy student, they’ll be a successful brother,” he added.
Payne said the fraternity is looking forward to continuing its philanthropic work.
Earlier this semester, Lambda Chi collected canned food and other non-perishable food items for victims of Hurricane Harvey and drove them to Houston via two U-Haul trucks, according to Payne, as part of its philanthropy initiative “Feeding America.”
With 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs, the Feeding America network is “the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization,” according to its website. The organization works with individuals, charities, businesses and the government to end hunger.
Lambda Chi’s primary fundraising event is an annual canned food drive in the spring that goes to a food bank in Montgomery.