Chi Psi hires house dad to manage image issues

Chi Psi fraternity is taking what it sees as a responsible step toward getting the house’s image back to what it should be — by getting a house dad.
October 19, 2010

Chi Psi fraternity is taking what it sees as a responsible step toward getting the house’s image back to what it should be — by getting a house dad.

The fraternity, also known as “The Lodge,” will have a live-in caretaker this week through the end of the academic school year, president Alexander Follmer said.

Jim Anberley is a 1982 graduate of the University of Minnesota and a former member of Chi Psi, Follmer said. He will be supervising and helping out with the chapter house.

“He will help us get back to where we need to be,” Follmer said.

Current members and alumni made the decision to have Anberley help make the transition with the new rules for fraternities easier to follow, he said.

Anberley, who volunteered for the position, could not be reached for comment.

“We’re going back to what we used to be initially,” said Chi Psi member Garret Schultz. “We have strayed away from that the last six years.”

A female University student reported being sexually assaulted at the Chi Psi house late last month, the second in a slew of charges to fraternities. The case against Chi Psi was closed without charges.

The fraternity has not escaped discipline, however — since 2004, the Interfraternity Council has implemented various sanctions on Chi Psi for providing alcohol to minors and other violations.

Chi Psi is on alcohol probation until March and will have to go through the Interfraternity Council to get off probation, Schultz said.

“We weren’t even aware of our turbulent past,” Schultz said.

Most of the sororities and fraternities that have house dads or moms enjoy having them because it is someone other than their peers that they can talk to about issues that are bothering them, said Chad Ellsworth, coordinator for the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life.

There are few house dads or moms at fraternities on campus, Ellsworth said.

One such fraternity is FarmHouse on the St. Paul campus, which has a female live-in caretaker.

“A lot of guys call her mom,” said FarmHouse president Luke Daninger, adding house mom MaryAnn Bannerman is a “driving force behind renovation.”

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