There is a long-standing rumor that in Stevens Point it is illegal for eight or more unrelated women to live together. The law is believed to have been put in place to prevent brothels from existing in the city.
The rumors have been proven false. There is no documentation of any such law existing in Stevens Point, or in Wisconsin that can be found online.
Sarah Johannes, Greek life and leadership coordinator at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point said there is no restriction on a certain number of women living together. A law like that would directly affect sorority houses if there was one in place.
George Jensen, vice president of the Phi Sigma Phi fraternity at UWSP, said although members of his organization are definitely interested in having a fraternity house, there are no official houses associated with Greek life here.
Madyson Main, president of the inter-Greek council and member of Delta Phi Epsilon, said members of Greek life work very hard to prove wrong the poor stigmas surrounding sororities and fraternities.
Stephanie Lesperance, president of Phi Omega, said the presence of Greek-houses in a city is also dependent on the culture of the community. She said the idea of many college students in one house together unsupervised can be daunting to the community.
Jensen agreed and said before Phi Sigma Phi would ever officially own a house for the organization, they would want the blessing of Stevens Point and of the administration at UWSP.
Jensen also said there would likely be more Greek houses in Stevens Point if Greek life were more popular like it is at Ripon College.
Although Ripon is smaller than UWSP, there is around 60 percent involvement in Greek life there, which makes it easier to both pay for and maintain a house owned by the organizations.
Regarding the number of students living in one house together, the Greeks are not the only group that consider housing together. Sports teams at UWSP are known to band together and live in larger houses with eight or more people.
Some members of the women’s club rugby team had a house last year with eight women living in it.
Mikayla Ison, senior arts management major and member of the women’s rugby team, said she did not live in the house herself, but knows her teammates lived there together.
There are no rumors that a similar law has existed for unrelated men living together, and no documentation exists online of anything similar.
While some peculiar laws do exist in Wisconsin, like ATCP 81.60(1) which requires certain kinds of cheese to be “highly pleasing” there is nothing to worry about for female students looking to live together.