Changes are coming to Sigma Alpha Epsilon, the national fraternity that found itself in the middle of a scandal last week after a video surfaced showing some of its University of Oklahoma members singing a racist chant.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday, Blaine Ayers, SAE’s executive director, said that the fraternity will establish a national diversity committee, conduct a review of all of its chapters and set up an anonymous hotline where SAE students will be able to report any offensive behavior. Members will also be required to undergo diversity training.
“I hope the crisis response will evolve into a thoughtful process that brings in a number of stakeholders on campus,” said Ben Reese, President of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education, who has been working with SAE to implement the programs.
After the racist video went viral, University president David Boren issued a speedy response, ordering SAE members on campus to vacate their frat house and expelling two of the identifiable men in the video. The chapter was later disbanded by the national organization.
During the press conference, Ayers expressed outrage and embarrassment at the students’ actions. He said that the video does not align with the values of the fraternity, which is 3 percent Black, and ensures that national officers are still investigating the Oklahoma chapter.
“We are focused on trying to determine the root of this song or chant,” he said. “That’s our primary focus.”