December 12, 2003
find new home
Sig Ep house leased to Delta Kappa Epsilon
By Chris Freiberg
Published Friday, December 12, 2003
The old Sigma Phi Epsilon house
is about to get "Deke-ified."
Delta Kappa Epsilon has announced a deal to lease the former Sigma Phi
Epsilon house beginning Aug. 2004.
The house, located at 815 N. Jordan Ave., will be the home of Delta
Kappa Epsilon until 2007.
"This is one of the most outstanding things ever," Delta Kappa
Epsilon President Cullen Harkness said. "We can rush now and
establish ourselves on campus and really root ourselves in the Greek
community at IU. Being one of the smaller fraternities on campus, this
is a great opportunity for us."
Sigma Phi Epsilon was evicted from the house by the national chapter
because of financial difficulties in Dec. 2002. The national chapter
said the financial condition of the fraternity had "deteriorated to
the point that the chapter could no longer assure housing conditions for
the spring term," according to a January article in the Indiana
Delta Kappa Epsilon's leasing of the house will alleviate the debt
accumulated by Sigma Phi Epsilon.
"By collaborating with their national chapter, we were able to set
up a deal that's a good situation for both sides," Harkness said.
Delta Kappa Epsilon actually raised the money to lease the house from
alumni at DePauw University.
The DePauw chapter of the fraternity probably won't return to the campus
for another decade, meaning plenty of alumni are willing to support the
IU chapter, said Eric Freeman, DePauw Chairman of the Chapter
The lease is the culmination of more than two years of collaboration
between Freeman, Harkness and IU alumnus Nathan Hartman.
"When they called a few years ago, I really was impressed with
them," Freeman said. "And since we were the only Deke chapter
in Indiana for close to 150 years, we were glad to help."
When Sigma Phi Epsilon left the house, the fraternity also left behind
more than $50,000 in damage. That has since been repaired by the
national chapter, but the new tenants are still planning on doing a
little bit of remodeling.
"We're going to be Deke-ifying the house to suit our style,"
Harkness said. "Of course we'll be putting our letters up; we may
or may not have some sort of stone out front; and we have what we call
our 'rampant lions,' these two standing stone lions, which we'll be
putting by the front door."
Interfraternity Council President Evan Waldman said he was pleased with
the fraternity's acquisition.
"Personally, I think it's always a positive sign to see
fraternities moving into houses," Waldman said. "But it's
important for them to keep in mind their core values and not let the
fact that they're moving into a house skew their core values."