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2017 National Hazing Prevention Week

Updates from Lexington

The month of September is often an exciting time of year for a chapter. Members are refreshed and recharged after a few months away from school. Optimism is high on what the chapter can accomplish for the year.

For many campuses, September is also the biggest time for recruitment of new members. Despite the Greek community’s longstanding commitment to a values-based member experience, the fact remains that hazing continues to exist on most college campuses and continues to negatively impact far too many college students each year. A few findings to consider from the National Study of Student Hazing by Dr. Elizabeth Allan and Dr. Mary Madden:

  • 55% of college students involved in clubs, teams, and organizations experience hazing.
  • 47% of students come to college having experienced hazing.
  • Students recognize hazing as part of the campus culture; 69% of students who belonged to a student activity reported they were aware of hazing activities occurring in student organizations other than their own.
  • Hazing occurs across a range of student groups, beyond just social Greek-letter organizations, including varsity athletics, club sports, intramural teams, military groups, recreation clubs, service fraternities and sororities, marching bands, honor societies, and academic clubs.

As demanded by our founders when forming a fraternity in opposition of hazing, Sigma Nu must remain engaged in concerted efforts to understand, address, and ultimately prevent the issue of hazing that may exist in our respective communities.

National Hazing Prevention Week (NHPW), held the third week of September each year, is one of those efforts. This year’s NHPW will take place September 18-22, 2017. During that week, organizations and campuses across the country will host seminars, workshops, and awareness campaigns to help prepare community members to identify and address hazing practices.

Sigma Nu Fraternity has been a longtime supporter of NHPW and its organizer, HazingPrevention.Org. At the local level, chapters have engaged in various efforts to support NHPW through the years. For example, a chapter created a pledge against hazing banner encouraging students, faculty, and staff to sign to make a public statement that their community does not support or tolerate hazing. Another chapter organized a presentation by a well-respected hazing prevention speaker for the entire campus community, not just Greek life, raising a level of mutual understanding and discourse that hazing is truly a campus problem that needs to be discussed at all levels, not just within the fraternity and sorority community.

Nationally, one of Sigma Nu’s efforts to support NHPW is participation in the #40Actions Campaign. This is the next evolution of the #40Answers Campaign pioneered by Sigma Nu in 2010. For each of the 40 days leading up to NHPW, one commonly heard excuse for inaction against hazing is posted to the Twitter account for HazingPrevention.Org (@PreventHazing). Participants then reply with how they would respond to that excuse. Many chapters and members are regular participants. If you or your chapter are not engaged, log in to Twitter, search #40Actions, and join the conversation!

There are several other resources on the Sigma Nu website highlighting ways a chapter can get involved in organizing or supporting NHPW efforts in their local community. Please also share your chapter’s NHPW story by emailing news@sigmanu.org.

© 2015-2017 Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc.
9 North Lewis Street, P.O. Box 1869, Lexington, Virginia 24450
Phone: 540.463.1869 | Fax: 540.463.1669 | Email: headquarters@sigmanu.org

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