The annual Beta Upsilon Chi (BYX) date auction has been canceled due to sororities withdrawing from the event.
According to a statement from Emma Breyer, Panhellenic Council vice president of community involvement, Panhellenic did not tell BYX to cancel the fraternity’s date auction, but expressed concern regarding the event.
“Panhellenic is a values based association,” Breyer wrote. “When it comes to these philanthropies, we really need to reflect on what our participation in any philanthropy event says about us and whether or not our participation properly reflects the values that we strive to live by.”
Breyer wrote that upon receiving the packet concerning the BYX date auction, several Panhellenic executive officers met with BYX to discuss their concerns. Breyer wrote the officers supported auctioning items, but did not support purchasing men as dates.
Panhellenic ultimately decided that their twelve chapters would not participate in the date auction, which led to the fraternity canceling the event.
Breyer wrote in an email that there is a philanthropy approval process in place to protect women in their chapters from participating in events that may be harmful physically, socially, or emotionally.
The process for approval, as provided by Breyer, is as follows:
- Chapters that would like Panhellenic participation in their event submit a packet detailing their event to the Panhellenic Council vice president of community involvement.
- The vice president sends the packet to the Panhellenic delegate from each chapter.
- Each chapter votes on whether or not Panhellenic will participate in the event.
In response to Panhellenic withdrawing from the event, BYX developed a new philanthropy idea that partners with Fortress Youth Development Center. Fortress YDC is a Christian program which runs various program for underprivileged kids that empower them to become successful and productive adults.
The new event BYX will create is called Forts for Fortress. Sorority teams will be invited to participate and build forts out of sheets with the help of Fortress students who are coming to visit the university’s campus. Each sorority will be assigned to work with a student ‘architect’ from Fortress, BYX President Michael Meek wrote in an email.
The event shows students from Fortress what college is like, Meek wrote, and it also gives members of the Horned Frog community a chance to create relationships with the students.
Getting involved on a personal level makes a different type of impact than just a donation, Meek wrote.
All proceeds will go directly to Fortress YDC. The kids involved with the event will be given a brief tour of campus and listen to a presentation on the importance of attending college.
“We hope that Date Auction being cancelled isn’t a disappointment to people who loved to attend, and we want to thank everyone who has participated over the years,” Meek wrote. “We’re excited to make Forts for Fortress as exciting as Date Auction was!” [sic]
Forts for Fortress will take place on March 20 from 4-7 p.m. in the Brown-Lupton University Union ballroom.