Former UVM fraternity Sigma Phi Epsilon (SigEp) lost its charter last year, but what happened this summer may have hit even closer to home.
Actually, a whole lot closer.
The SigEp house at 371 Main St. will undergo interior renovations before becoming home to approximately 30 Champlain College students this fall, according to the Burlington Free Press.
SigEp lost its charter last December when a controversial survey question distributed among fraternity brothers went public, sparking national media attention and local protests.
Since the University’s decision to de-recognize SigEp, the brothers who were living at the house were forced to move out, and the national organization decided what to do next.
Champlain acquired the house in June, after Burlington’s Development Review Board approved the college’s request to change the property from a fraternity house to a dormitory for five years.
Efforts to transform the 8,200-square-foot house into a student dorm have resulted in a $300,000 interior makeover, a University Business article stated.
But the house isn’t exactly changing hands. SigEp has owned 371 Main St. since 1956, and the fraternity continues to be the sole proprietor of the house throughout its leasing agreement with Champlain.
Executive director of SigEp Brian Warren said in a phone conversation with the Cynic that the terms and conditions of the agreement allowed room for the fraternity to eventually re-apply for its charter.
“Typically, four years is the length of time that a chapter will remain dormant,” Warren said. “It is our intention that we can explore various conversations [with UVM] about re-affiliation after that time.”