The Miami University Greek community may need to be more conscientious about following Pan-Hellenic Association (PanHel) and Interfraternity Council (IFC) standards as new pledges become acclimated.
According to Susan Vaughn, director of ethics and student conflict resolutions, hazing allegations rise during this time of year as sororities and fraternities gain new members.
“This is usually when there are reports of hazing activities,” Vaughn said, adding this year is no exception.
The Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and Leadership declined to comment on any allegations or investigations made.
Hazing is prohibited by the student handbook and is illegal in Ohio.
Vaughn said a meeting was necessary after the Office of the Dean of Students heard of hazing allegations.
The Office of the Dean of Students, PanHel and IFC called chapter presidents to an emergency meeting at 4 p.m. Jan. 15 regarding hazing allegations and recruitment violations.
“Our biggest concern at that point (was) that this sounds very serious,” Vaughn said.
According to Vaughn, all hazing allegations have been anonymous and have not identified a specific chapter.
Drew Sturtevant, IFC president, said there was cause for concern because of the number of phone calls offices were receiving about potential allegations.
“We were concerned for the volume of phone calls we were getting,” Sturtevant said. “We felt we needed to address the chapters right now instead of later, so making it clear to all of the presidents that we aren’t going to tolerate if (hazing) happens.”
All potential hazing allegations have been anonymous, complicating the validity and details of potential issues.
“We can’t do anything about it, a lot of times the parents or the students don’t say their name,” Sturtevant said. “We advise them to go to EthicsPoint.”
Sturtevant added that EthicsPoint is a third-party program the university uses to collect anonymous tips on hazing and underage drinking.
Robin Parker, university general counsel, said Miami’s hazing allegations have been similar to the Ohio University hazing incident confirmed earlier in the week.
“We’ve received similar allegations (as OU),” Parker said. “We’ve heard rumors. Nobody has come forward.”
Parker said no individuals are being investigated at this time, but did not comment if chapters or larger entities are being investigated.