OU suspends 15 fraternaties amidst hazing allegations


By Ivy Potter - ipotter@aimmediamidwest.com



Athens-

Ohio University has suspended all Interfraternity Council (IFC) chapter operations in light of hazing allegations against numerous fraternities which arose this week. According to a letter sent out on Thursday by Ohio University Dean of Students Jenny Hall-Jones to all IFC Chapter Presidents, allegations have been made against seven different IFC chapters and each are pending investigation. “Earlier this week, we received allegations that two IFC chapters were hazing new members and those chapters were placed on a cease and desist from Community Standards and Student Responsibility (CSSR). Yesterday, we received reports of hazing that encompassed five more chapters.” wrote Hall-Jones. The letter stated the accused chapters will be receiving their notice of investigation and cease and desist letters from CSSR within the next few days. Hall-Jones stated these claims allude to a troubling culture growing within IFC organizations. “These troubling allegations, which will be thoroughly investigated, indicate a potentially escalating systemic culture within our IFC organizations, and Ohio University will not put at risk the health and safety of our students,” said Hall-Jones.

As a result of nearly half of Ohio University’s IFC chapters facing investigation for conduct that violates the University’s Student Code of Conduct, all chapter operations for the fifteen Interfraternity Council chapters have been suspended until further notice. A flyer from OU on IFC recruitment listed Acacia, Alpha Epsilon Pi, Beta Theta Pi, Delta Tau Delta, Delta Upsilon, That Chi, Lambda Chi Alpha, Pi Kappa Alpha, Pi Kappa Phi, Sigma Phi Epsilon, Sigma Chi, Phi Gamma Delta, Phi Delta Theta, Phi Kappa Tau and Phi Kappa Psi as the universities Interfraternity Council chapters. The suspension went into effect on Thursday, with Chapter leaders being tasked with sending a copy of the letter to all members of their chapter, including new members or any yet-to-be initiated members involved in the “pledge” process before 4 p.m. yesterday.

In the last five years Ohio University has already seen the removal of three fraternities for various reasons which they listed as hazing, alcohol & drug use, risk management violation, and failure to comply with University policies and expectations. Sigma Alpha Epsilon was expelled in 2014, Phi Kappa Theta was expelled in 2016, and Sigma Pi was expelled in spring of 2019. Colin Wiant, Sigma Pi Pledge, died from asphyxiation last November inside the fraternity house and a wrongful death suit ensued by the family against Sigma Pi.

Ironically, these allegations come just one week after Ohio University recognized National Hazing Prevention Week which welcomed a panel and speakers to the university to discuss the topic of hazing.

By Ivy Potter

ipotter@aimmediamidwest.com

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932