Joining a business fraternity can be a good way to get on Wall Street. But it looks like the initiates of one Cornell chapter took their valuable connections too far. In doing so, they’ve continued a cherished Wall Street tradition: undermining democracy.
Two members (including a senior officer) and a freshman pledge of Cornell’s Delta Sigma Pi, a “professional business fraternity” which hosts events like “So You Want to Work on Wall Street”, appear to have significantly compromised the integrity of the university’s Student Assembly election process, according to a report published in The Cornell Daily Sun. Reporter Jeff Stein obtained internal SA correspondence indicating that University Assembly representative Melissa Lukasiewicz ’14 gave freshman SA representative E.J. Yeterian ’15 several sheets of signatures endorsing Lukasiewicz, which Yeterian then forged so that the signatures appeared to endorse herself.
Apparently Yeterian hadn’t collected enough signatures for her own run by the SA’s deadline, so she accepted Lukasiewicz’s signature sheets, crossed out Lukasiewicz’s name at the top of each, and wrote in her own. According to several Sun commenters, Yeterian is currently pledging Delta Sigma Pi, which would explain why Lukasiewicz, an active member of DSP, was comfortable providing Yeterian with the signatures. (Over the weekend we emailed Yeterian, along with the entire executive committee, to verify her pledge status. We’ll update if/when we hear back.)
The Student Assembly’s “Campaign Ethics” says that no candidate may “pressure or force other students to vote or campaign for them under any circumstances.”
Yeterian’s brazenness (did she just really cross Lukasiewicz’s name out?) suggests that she didn’t understand the fraudulence of using attempting to use signatures intended to endorse someone else. Lukasiewicz’s participation, however, is pretty surprising. As the chair of the University Assembly’s Executive Committee, she probably undoubtedly knew that you don’t just give away your signatures to someone who doesn’t have enough. Even if Especially if that person happens to be pledging your Wall Street-feeding fraternity.
Indeed, DSP’s executive committee comprises employees and interns of Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, UBS (New York and Tokyo), JPMorgan Chase, Credit Suisse, Morgan Stanley, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney (really), and Barclays Capital.
The person who makes this foolish incident approach Twilight Zone-esque levels of absurdity is Adam Raveret ’12 , the Student Assembly’s Director of Elections and DSP’s VP of Community Service, who has allowed Yeterian to continue in the election: