Georgetown sends reminder about the definition of hazing
On Wednesday, March 18th, the Office of Student Affairs reminded the study body that the Disciplinary Review Committee voted last spring to strengthen the language in the Code of Student Conduct regarding hazing. The Office of Student Conduct co-chaired with the Athletic Department to create this definition of hazing for the codebook.
“While our code addressed any allegations regarding assault or violence that might be considered hazing, we were following a local trend by coming up with a specific definition…We wanted a separation definition for hazing so that people would know we take the issue seriously,” said Judy Johnson, the Director of the Office of Student Conduct.
The email may lead readers to believe that a particular incident or initiative drove the Office of Student Conduct to introduce a definition of hazing. Johnson explains, however, that the committee aimed instead to keep the codebook up to date and relevant for students.
“Every year we go through the code of student conduct and discuss ways to make it clearer and more pertinent to issues students bring up on campus,” she said.
Regular protocol may have driven these committees to characterize hazing at the University, but the committees sought the most accurate description as seen by students. Members of GUSA, the Athletics Department and other student groups collaborated with the Hazing Prevention and Education Committee for this effort.
The definition formed the framework for the creation of the website http://stophazing.georgetown.edu and may inspire more initiatives for the new committee.
Vox asks you to consider how the definition holds up to your understanding of the term: “Hazing [is] an abuse of power by a member of an organization or group against an individual as a condition for seeking to join, hold membership, or affiliate with the organization or group. An abuse of power includes, but is not limited to: unproductive, unsafe, excessive and/or demeaning act[s] that endanger the physical, psychological, or emotional well-being of an individual.”
Photo: Kate Ter Haar via flickr