Oct 122006
Authors: ADAM BOHLMEYER The Rocky Mountain Collegian

As the fate of the embattled Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity hangs in the balance, one CSU student will be instrumental in deciding it.

Edward Modec, a senior political science major, is chief justice of the Associated Students of CSU Supreme Court.

And as such, he is set to decide whether an expected appeal by SAE will be referred to the seven-member court.

Modec chose his post because it was relevant to his major.

“I find the judicial process interesting,” he said. “I am a study of the real Supreme Court, and it’s a good way to serve students.”

A student board last Thursday heard accusations that SAE violated the university’s and Greek Life’s no-alcohol policy stemming from a booze-fueled party that, according to an internal report obtained by the Collegian, nearly resulted in the death of a 17-year-old girl.

The CSU freshman was rushed to the hospital after downing 12 shots of hard liquor in about a half hour, according to the report.

The student panel – the Greek Board of Standards and Values Alignment – recommended that the university strip SAE’s recognition on a 6-1 vote, said Dana Alexander, vice president of SAVA on the Panhellenic Council.

The fraternity has until Monday to appeal the decision. Chris Smith, the chapter’s president, said an appeal will be filed.

And if it is, Modec said he feels confident he’s ready for it. That’s because he’s served on the Greek SAVA board and feels he has a good understanding of it.

Modec, who enjoys reading science fiction, joined ASCSU in 2003 as a student advocate. He served as an associate justice on the court from 2004 to the spring of 2006.

Still, the senior sees himself as just a typical college student.

“I think I am a pretty average student,” he said. “I am not above or below, just average.”

Next year, he plans on attending the student affairs and higher education graduate program at CSU, and hopes to eventually work on federal legislation.

“I would be pushing for higher education reform,” he said. “There is a lot of change that can brought about.”

The Castle Rock native chose to attend CSU for simple reasons.

“I wanted to stay close to home,” Modec said. “I liked the community on campus. It is such a dynamic environment.”

Jason Green, ASCSU president, said he has faith in the chief justice to act fairly and professionally.

“He is very thorough and knowledgeable,” he said. “I trust his judgment and he just wants what is best for the students. It is a hard position to be in, though.”

As of Thursday afternoon, the SAE appeal had not been filed.

The university said the student board’s recommendation would weigh “heavily” on its decision about what, if any, sanctions to impose on the fraternity.

In the meantime, Modec waits, preparing himself for possibly his most high-profile case to date.

He says service – to students and the university – is the main draw of his job.

“It’s a rewarding position,” he said.

Staff writer Adam Bohlmeyer can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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