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Expressing Gratitude and Seeking Truth

First of all, we want to extend our sincerest thanks to everyone who has supported us throughout this unfortunate ordeal. Our administrations and presidents at Western Technical College and Victoria College have been enormously supportive, and we deeply appreciate that they took these allegations seriously and immediately investigated them.

We want to thank our advisors for their unparalleled support and guidance. The advisors of Phi Theta Kappa are truly unsung heroes. Additionally, thank you to those of you who have shared our story, offered kind words, and publicly or privately supported us.

We would like to reiterate one very important fact: our aim is not to attack Phi Theta Kappa, but to seek justice. We love the foundation on which this organization stands: scholarship, leadership, service, and fellowship.

With that love in mind, one year ago we brought our concerns to a handful of Phi Theta Kappa staff, with a plea to keep our allegations confidential while an investigation was launched. We have taken great pains since that first request to do just that.

During this past year, our colleges and our advisors have joined us in this mission to privately advocate for a truly independent investigation into these allegations. Even with their support, we have been largely ignored by Phi Theta Kappa, up until the recent Inside Higher Education article. In it, Dr. Risley “called the allegations false,” claiming that “PTK is aware of [the allegations] and that the complaints made by Reeck and Marek have been dismissed.” By their own admission, our complaints were dismissed as false, without an investigation.

Today Kip Johnson, Board Chair, released a statement claiming to have “authorized a thorough and independent investigation;” however, the law firm selected to conduct the current investigation is one that is regularly retained by Phi Theta Kappa. This is not conducive to a truly independent investigation.

Please help us to advocate for a wholly independent investigation, conducted by a party that is without the affiliation, influence, or control of Phi Theta Kappa. Supporting this independent investigation will allow the organization to truly focus on its mission to “recognize and encourage scholarship among two-year college students.”

We are not asking you to take sides in this matter; all of Phi Theta Kappa benefits from an independent investigation to reveal the truth.

Again, thank you so very much for your support and words of encouragement. We wish we could thank you all individually, and we hope that this statement relays our utmost gratitude.

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