‘Black Friday’ allows for added security, tamer parties

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LEANN BURKE / THE DEPAUW

Orange may never be the new black, but what people are now calling Black Friday replaced the usual Black Monday festivities.

After the Inter-Fraternity Council (IFC) forbade social events on the Monday following men’s and women’s bid days, fraternities decided to move said activities to this past Friday.

Black Monday was a tradition at DePauw wherein new pledge classes would go out together, often coupled with drinking to excess. Director of Public Safety, Angela Nally said the tradition was harmful in large part because it associated excessive alcohol consumption with greek life and it diminished class attendance on the followingTuesday.

Furthermore, fraternities are not allowed to register events on weekdays, so the usual Monday night shenanigans never had outside security present. Because so many fraternity chapters registered events on Friday night, third party security companies assisted risk management teams in attempting to control partygoers.

“It was definitely better than the Mondays after bid night,” Nally said. “We did have two people go to the hospital on Friday, but none of them were first-year students.”

Junior Lex Freund is involved in the CATS (Campus Assisting Trained Students) program, which pays students to be sober monitors at fraternities during big party weekends. Freund, who worked at Phi Kappa Psi on Friday said the events of the night went smoothly for her.

“While we were working there was very little risk and there wasn’t a time where we felt someone was in danger due to intoxication levels,” she said. “I have spoken to other CATS who worked at Sigma Chi and it seemed there was a bit more of risk, but nothing substantial.”

IFC President, junior CJ Cazee, went to the different chapters on Friday to see how the events were going. He said the parties seemed less chaotic than his experiences on Mondays in years past.

“In terms of drinking, the rounds that we went on there was very little hard alcohol out,” Cazee said. “I really liked how everyone was able to register so it kind of gave people a chance to spread out.”

With just one party registration and one alcohol violation on the Monday after bid night, the University’s fight to get rid of the tradition worked, for the most part. Nally said she thinks this is a positive change, and she hopes it will continue in the years to come.

“I haven’t heard a negative comment,” she said. “Honestly, I think that the celebration of joining a new chapter [is normal]… But it can certainly be four days later when it’s safer for the new members and the chapters themselves.”

Freund, like many others, liked the tradition of celebrating with the new members while the excitement of bid day is still fresh, but she knows why the changes were made.

“Honestly, I loved the tradition of Black Monday. It's the first whole day where people know what chapters they belong to, but I do understand why it was moved to Friday,” she said. “I miss the tradition of Black Monday, but it doesn't really matter whether I go out on Monday or Friday.”

Cazee said IFC is open to ideas for regulations regarding the Monday after bid day in the future, but that going on fraternity property at all was banned this year just to ensure that students followed what the University wanted.

“The first time we really wanted to make sure it was followed habitually,” he said. “We really wanted to make this a sober brotherhood or sisterhood event. … This coming year we’ll be very open to having conversations about tweaking things.”