National Hazing Prevention Week (NHPW) has begun and is observed through the end of the week (September 23rd through September 27th). While the basis of NHPW is to raise awareness about hazing and its dangers, institutions can also use this reminder to review current initiatives and strategies to combat hazing at your institution.
And, in honor of National Hazing Prevention Week, Vector Solutions Education is excited to share our Hazing Prevention PSA, “Hazing is Ineffective,” with you and hope you utilize it on your campus to help empower students to prevent hazing from occurring.
Looking at the Facts
“Hazing” refers to any activity expected of someone joining a group (or to maintain full status in a group) that humiliates, degrades or risks emotional and/or physical harm, regardless of the person’s willingness to participate. And, research shows that 60% of students are subjected to hazing while on campus.
Here are a few additional statistics to provide better insight into hazing throughout U.S. institutions:
- 95% of students who are victims of hazing, don't report it.
- 82% of hazing deaths involve alcohol.
- 40 students have died in the last decade due to hazing-related incidents.
Students often participate in high-risk and life-threatening hazing activities for perceived benefits, such as a sense of accomplishment or self-discipline, at any cost. The most frequently reported hazing behaviors are:
- Drinking games or forced consumption of large amounts of alcohol.
- Sleep deprivation.
- Screamed or yelled at, and cursed by current members.
Legally, hazing is banned in 44 states. Each has different stipulations for the harshness of the criminal charges, but as you’ll see, most are very serious when it comes to hazing offenses.
What Can You Do?
It’s critical that institutions send a clear and recurring message to students about hazing and the role it plays on campus – prohibited and in most states, illegal. Institutions can pay the price if they are found to be negligent in criminal hazing cases – as well as generate negative press for the school.
Here are five helpful guidelines to reduce hazing on your campus:
- Provide hazing awareness and prevention training for students, faculty, and staff.
- Meet regularly with student groups on campus to review campus policies and procedures and better understand their implementation process.
- Enforce state laws and campus policies on hazing and implement strict disciplinary consequences – providing students a consistent and clear message.
- Offer students, faculty and staff a safe, anonymous way to report hazing incidents on campus (a known deterrent to reporting hazing is the fear of retaliation).
- Host a campus forum for students, faculty and staff to have an honest and open discussion about hazing in student groups.
In addition to the guidelines listed above, you can utilize our hazing prevention resources to raise awareness of hazing and its dangers:
Preview Our Hazing Prevention Program
Through peer presenters, student testimonials, and scenarios, students will learn the following from this course: the research-verified truth that hazing is not effective, it harms rather than helps organizations, how to avoid “group think,” and what to do if they are being hazed.