Former fraternity members speak on recent expulsion

Kappa+Sigma+Fraternity+received+a+letter+on+Nov.+2+notifying+them+of+their+expulsion.+

Photo by Josh Meitz

Kappa Sigma Fraternity received a letter on Nov. 2 notifying them of their expulsion.

Tucked away behind the Catholic Financial Life Building on 11th Street used to be the home of Marquette University’s Kappa Sigma Fraternity Xi-Xi Chapter. While the two Greek letters “Kappa” and “Sigma” used to adorn the 11th Street façade of the fraternity house, the front of the building now possesses a giant “for sale” sign.

The Supreme Executive Committee of Kappa Sigma Fraternity expelled Marquette’s chapter Oct. 30. Members and alumni of the chapter received a letter Nov. 2. notifying them of the immediate expulsion from campus.

“All undergraduate members of the chapter are hereby expelled and all pledges are released,” the letter from Chad Gebhardt, chief administrative officer of Kappa Sigma Fraternity, said.

Kappa Sigma’s Executive Committee acts as the governing body of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity. It is composed of the highest positions within the fraternity as a whole.

As for the reason for the expulsion, “severe financial delinquency” of $21,810, “contumacious conduct” and violation of the fraternity’s constitution, rules and by-laws were listed in the letter.

Kappa Sigma has had previous violations with the university. In both 2017 and 2019, the chapter was found to be in violation of the university’s alcohol policy. The chapter’s 2019 suspension was lifted in early 2021.

The former president of the Marquette chapter and a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, Samuel Nennig said the COVID-19 pandemic hit them particularly hard.

“COVID was the main contributor to the debt,” Nennig said. “We were being charged while we were unable to operate.”

Senior in the College of Business Administration William Nelson came to Marquette with the expectation that Greek life wasn’t big. However, after joining his roommate during rush season in his first year, Nelson gravitated toward Marquette’s chapter of Kappa Sigma.

“(I) connected with the guys instantly. Everyone was very welcoming and cared about me on a personal level, I knew I had to be a part of the brotherhood,” Nelson said about first initially meeting the Marquette chapter.

Since Nelson did not officially rush at the time, he never initially received an official bid from the chapter. Yet, when it seemed like joining the fraternity would be impossible, Nelson was still given a chance to join.

“(Kappa Sigma) cared enough that they spoke to the (Interfraternity Council) chair and allowed me special permission to rush anyways, it showed me a lot about their character,” Nelson said.

Nelson still feels a sense of camaraderie, despite the fraternity’s removal from Marquette’s campus.

“The guys in the fraternity mean the world to me,” Nelson said. “The organization itself is just a title, but every member shares a friendship and a bond I would say is similar to people who played high school athletics together. We all have each other’s back and not a lot of people know what that’s like, I cherish it.”

Nelson also said he felt the fraternity reacted “as anyone in their situation would.”

University spokesperson Kevin Conway said the university is currently aware of the situation in regards to Kappa Sigma’s expulsion.

“The National Headquarters of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity informed the university of its actions with regard to Marquette’s chapter,” Conway said in an email. “The chapter has been given a 30-day window to appeal the decision with the National Organization of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity.”

This story was written by Benjamin Wells. He can be reached at benjamin.wells@marquette.edu.