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Consultant meets with MU Greek community on new report

The consultant that made numerous recommendations on how to make the University of Missouri’s Greek Life safer met with community members on Friday to discuss his report.

Gentry McCreary, head of Dyad Consulting, led a question-and-answer session on his Oct. 26 report regarding the current state of MU and its Greek system. The report highlighted a perceived lack of involvement and trust between the school and its fraternities and sororities.

McCreary said he met with students, staff and alumni to review the Greek experience earlier in the semester. The groups talked about how involved the school should be with the system, including if the school should withdraw completely from it. The passion people had for the Greek community, McCreary said, showed him that the school needed to be involved.

“We need to be all in,” McCreary said to ABC 17 News. “We need to be fully invested, and the report really reflected what does it look like if the university is fully invested in making sure this experience is as safe as it can possibly be.”

Four fraternities have either lost recognition as a student group or been suspended by their national organization in the last two years at MU due to repeated conduct violations.

McCreary recommended that freshmen no longer live in fraternity housing. The risks involved include greater exposure to hazing, isolation from the rest of the campus community and alcohol abuse.

“We’re taking first semester college freshman and we’re immediately throwing them into this environment where there’s a lot of alcohol abuse, a lot of potential for problems stemming from the over-consumption of alcohol,” McCreary said.

Trevor Beshear, spokesman for the Interfraternity Council, said he enjoyed hearing the explanations behind McCreary’s recommendations. He said he appreciated the focus on creating a safer environment for students. While IFC has read the report, it has not yet made a comment on any specific results. Beshear said private meetings next week between McCreary and several different groups, including IFC, will help them with a direction.

“It can’t just be us wanting our way, it can’t just be the university wanting their way,” Beshear said. “It’s got to be a collaborative effort to make sure that we’re implementing those recommendations in the best way possible.”

McCreary said changing the “social audit” procedure, where private security firms search Greek homes for contraband, would help make things safer. Currently, auditors cannot search rooms that have closed doors, which McCreary said weakens their ability to find things like hard alcohol and drugs.

“We don’t want to create a draconian police state where people always have private inspectors in their room,” McCreary said. “What we do want to do is have an opportunity to make sure the events that are taking place are consistent with state and local laws, that they are safe and that they are adherent to national and university policies in regards to…the distribution of alcohol.”

McCreary said he would host several private meetings next week with different groups to get feedback on his recommendations.

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