President Nellis Announces the Creation of Two Task Forces

Thursday, February 14 2013

MOSCOW, Idaho – University of Idaho President M. Duane Nellis continues to demonstrate his commitment to reassuring campus safety. As part of this commitment, he announced today the formation of two task forces to evaluate university policies regarding alcohol and substance abuse among students university-wide and to examine the university’s relationship with fraternities and sororities.

The substance abuse task force will assess the university and community climate, and it will undertake a thorough review of prevention education programs, enforcement strategies, environmental factors and current policies. The review panel will be composed of faculty, staff, students and community leaders. The task force will be led by Bruce Pitman, vice provost for student affairs and dean of students. The report will be completed by late spring.

“Losing one of our students for any reason is a tragedy, and the entire university community is deeply saddened,” said Nellis. “I’m proud of the work we’ve done to keep our campus safe and healthy. We are rated in the top 35 safest campuses nationally. While it is true that substance abuse is a complex national problem that we’re not immune from; it is our duty, because of the deep responsibility we feel to students and their families, to regularly examine how we handle these issues so that we can do everything possible to help our students make wise choices that allow them to remain safe.”

The Greek life taskforce, which will review the University of Idaho’s relationship with fraternities and sororities and their national chapters, includes leading university alumni, leaders in higher education and leadership of the national organizations that have fraternities and sororities located at the University of Idaho. This review panel will review, evaluate and examine the fundamental relationship the university has with the Greek system. The task force will be led by co-chairs Carl Berry and Francis Ellsworth. The report will be completed by late spring.

“We care about our students, and we invest heavily in proactive educational programs and initiatives that promote the best outcomes for them,” said Pitman. “We will conduct a thorough examination and critical analysis of the university’s relationship with our fraternities and sororities with the aim of recommending changes that enhance student learning, health and safety.”
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The University of Idaho inspires students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals, and competes in the Western Athletic Conference. Through the university’s $225 million Inspiring Futures capital campaign, private giving will enhance student learning, faculty research and innovation, and a spirit of enterprise. Learn more: