School officials take measures to prevent high school students from attending annual Roundup

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Roundup attendees take a break from festivities during last year’s annual gathering. The Interfraternity Council of UT recently announced that a college ID is required to participate in any Roundup-related event in the hope of discouraging high school students from attending.

Photo Credit: Caleb Bryant Miller | Daily Texan Staff

Despite University and high school officials discouraging prospective UT students from attending Roundup weekend activities, students in Greek organizations don’t expect less high-schooler turnout.

The Office of the Dean of Students and the Greek councils drafted a letter to sorority and fraternity community stakeholders to remind them that high school students are discouraged from attending the event on March 24-27. This is not the first year the letter has been sent, according to a spokesperson from the dean’s office.

The letter said the event is only for college students and not for high school students and a college ID is now required for all Roundup attendees.

In previous years, however, high school students have found ways around the system and still participated in Roundup, the letter said.

According to the letter, Roundup originally served as a homecoming weekend for alumni and students with a flurry of celebratory activities including parades and pageants.

Since 1990, the event is no longer recognized as an official University event, the letter said, due to “several racially inflammatory incidents” associated with it.

The Interfraternity Council also sent out a similar letter last year stating that high school students would not be allowed to attend Roundup events and the weekend was intended for college students only.

In a statement regarding the letter, spokeswoman Marcia Gibbs said the Office of the Dean of Students is working closely with council and members of the Greek community to ensure the safety of all who attend Roundup.

Parts of the letter will be shared with high school counselors who are regularly informed about the University’s admissions activities, according to the statement.

Linda Foster, principal at Alamo Heights High School in San Antonio, said she does not think Roundup is an appropriate event for high school students.

“I don’t think it’s a good idea,” she said. “We do have some kids who think it’s a great opportunity for them, but it’s definitely not something we encourage.”

Despite concerns from the University regarding high school students attending, nursing freshman Morgan Thompson said she had a positive Roundup experience as a high school senior that increased her excitement about life at UT.

“A lot of people from neighboring high schools went,” she said. “I got to know a lot of my best friends from it — I got to see the social aspect of UT and I think it definitely prepared me for rush.”

Mechanical engineering junior Ryan Sisak participated in Roundup last year and said he sees why UT wants to prevent the attendance of high school students.

“It’s probably not appropriate for high school kids,” he said. “It’s a good experience but I could understand why they wouldn’t want high schoolers to go because of all the alcohol and things like that.”

Meg Milosevich, finance junior and Panhellenic member, said she doesn’t think the letter will have the desired effects.

“I think it’s such a big recruitment time for sororities and fraternities that there’s no way to stop people from coming,” she said. “I understand the liability issues, but a letter from UT won’t stop students from attending.”

Printed on, Tuesday February 14, 2012 as: Note aims to deter high schoolers from Roundup