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Thursday, Jun 20, 2024

ADP Pledges Growth, Education

Author: John Joy

I am writing on behalf of the Middlebury Chapter of Alpha Delta Phi Society (ADP) in regard to the pledge event that took place during half time at the Middlebury football game on Oct. 27. As a result of some last minute technicalities, the pledges were unable to play music over the public announcement system. Acknowledging that the performance would be greatly compromised in the absence of music, Donald Anselmi '04, an ADP pledge, decided to improvise, and felt that he could inject some humor into the situation if he were to partially expose himself to the crowd.

Given the circumstances present at the time (a football game during Homecoming, in which many members of the community, alumni, faculty, trustees, administrators and children would be attending), it was a very unwise decision. Because of this incident, the reputation of ADP and Donald have been severely tarnished.

As president of ADP, I can honestly say that the house did not condone Donald's decision, because it had been realized spontaneously and was not premeditated. We were just as shocked as the rest of the crowd upon viewing the incident from the stands. Unfortunately, ADP did sanction the half time show, and this action occurred during the event, so we must share in the responsibility of rectifying the situation. Also, this incident took place during our education process.

Pledge is a learning process. A social house, at the very least, serves as an intermediary between life under parental guidance and life in the real world. A social house provides an environment for a member to grow as an individual and a member of a larger community. While a house will not raise a student like a parent, it will not be as harsh and unforgiving as the real world.

Donald is a pledge of ADP. He made a mistake, a very public mistake. The role of the house is to now help Donald learn from this incident and apply it to his conduct in the future. We are constantly investing time and energy in order to offer guidance for our membership and pledges, so that they may smoothly make the transition into the real world upon graduation. Similarly, ADP is an organization of Middlebury College. It is our role, with help from administrators, to ensure that ADP learns and grows from this experience as well.

I feel confident, as does the entire membership, that ADP can rise above what happened and repair the damage wrought by the act. Both the house and Donald have received various sanctions in order to rectify the situation. Our job now as a house is to prove to the community and to the College that ADP can change for the better. We acknowledge the severity of the situation and will do all that we can to allay fears about our potential to do good. A parent would not disown a child for such an incident. A corporation would fire an employee. ADP, as stated above, falls in between. We know that the act was wrong, but we will neither cover up for him, as would a parent, nor will we ostracize him, as would an employer. We remain loyal, publicly disapprove and promise to make amends so that the dignity of both Donald Anselmi and ADP is restored.