Thesis: Fraternities and Sororities and Greek Housing

Topics: Fraternities and sororities, Fire sprinkler system, Active fire protection Pages: 15 (3856 words) Published: July 4, 2013
School of Engineering and Applied Science
University of Virginia

Study and Analysis of Fire Protection Systems
in Fraternity and Sorority Houses
at the University of Virginia

Submitted by
Nicholas Feakins
Mechanical Engineering

STS 401
Section 7 (2 P.M.)
October 28th 2004
Science, Technology, and Society Advisor: Patricia Click
Technical Advisor: Dana Elzey

On my honor as a University student, on this assignment I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid as defined by the Honor Guidelines for Papers in Science, Technology, and Society Courses.

Signed _____________________________________

Technical Advisor – Dana Elzey

Science, Technology, and Society Advisor –
Patricia Click

Table of Contents

Executive Summary1

I.Rationale and Objectives2

Background Information and Context2
Current Engineering2
Relationship to Current Research3
The Fire Problem4
Thesis Objectives4

II.Preliminary Analysis of Social and Ethical Contexts5

The Broad Scope5
Summary of Positive and Negative Impacts5
The Direct and Indirect Beneficiaries6
Broad Cultural and Ethical Responsibilities7

III.Review of Technical Literature8

Origins of Fire Protection Systems8
Relevant Research in Fire Engineering9
Research on Fire Safety in Greek Housing10
Building on Past Research11

IV.Statement of Project Activities12


V.Expected Outcomes16

Expected Results16
Barometer of Success17



Budget and Equipment List20
Biographical Sketch of Author21
Executive Summary

Fire prevention, protection, suppression, and control systems span multiple engineering disciplines. Collectively, engineers refer to this diverse field as fire engineering. This proposal seeks to generate data, analysis, and recommendations for fire protection systems in fraternity and sorority houses at the University of Virginia. Background information for this proposal came from technical literature, expert interviews, and established engineering methods. The final thesis will present conclusions relevant to the lives of fire engineers, government regulators, students and the general public. The objectives of this project include:

• Establishing the current atmosphere of fire safety in Greek housing • Analyzing the available fire prevention and protection solutions • Making recommendations for more effective fire protection systems

The following proposal outlines the manner in which background research, industry interviews, data collection, data analysis, and implementation recommendations will compose the final thesis report. Overall, this purpose of this project is to increase student safety in fraternity and sorority housing. The proposed thesis will accomplish this objective by recommending measures to help fraternities and sororities implement effective and affordable fire prevention, protection, suppression, and control systems. I. Rationale and Objectives

Background Information and Context
The United States has one of the highest fire fatality rates in the industrialized world, with more than 80% of fatalities occurring in residences. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that approximately 1,700 fires occur each year in dormitories and Greek housing, resulting in over $2.8 million in damage (NFPA Website). Engineers use features such as fire retardant materials, detection and suppression technology, egress solutions, and alerting systems to improve public safety. A fire engineer works to make sure that all these systems function together...

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Brown, Gilmer C. “Report on Survey of Fire Hazards on Copeley Hill.” Undergraduate thesis. U of Virginia, 1949.
Dewar, Buddy. Fraternity and Sorority House Fire Safety. June 2004. National Fire Sprinkler Assosiation. PowerPoint. Oct. 2004. .
Institution of Fire Engineers. 20 Oct. 2004. Institution of Fire Engineers. 28 Oct. 2004
Jackson, Bob
Lyons, Scott. "Protecting Houses of Worship." Fire Engineering 157.4 (2004): 141-8.
National Fire Protection Association. National Fire Codes: A Compilation of NFPA Codes, Standards, Recommended Practices and Guides. 2004th ed. Quincy, MA: National Fire Protection Association, 2004.
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Salamone, Michael. "Retrofitting High-Rise Dorms with Alarm and Detection Systems." Fire Journal 84.1 (1990): Jan-39.
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