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What is Hazing



What is Hazing?

Recklessly or intentionally:

  1. engaging in or enabling an act or situation that subjects another person to the risk of
  2. causing or encouraging another person to violate any law or University regulation.

The implied or express consent of another person is not a defense under this section2

1Diminished mental or physical capacity within this section means reduced ability to perform mental or physical tasks due to drugs, alcohol, or physical or mental trauma.
2This policy shall not be interpreted to apply to speech that is protected under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.


Hazing Examples

The list below is not exhaustive. Nor is this list limited to one type of organization. These are just examples of some hazing practices that have occurred.

  • Any type of unusual or potentially harmful physical contact
  • Paddling
  • Consumption of alcoholic beverages during recruitment/intake activity
  • Forced consumption or required eating of food/beverages
  • Interference with academic pursuit, normal rest hours, employment, and family responsibilities
  • Forced calisthenics/exercise of any kind
  • Servitude
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Indecent exposure
  • Wearing or carrying any unusual object that may cause undue attention and/or potentially harmful objects
  • Road trips or kidnapping of new members/aspirants
  • Subjecting pledge/new member/aspirant to extremely loud or repetitious music
  • Throwing objects at new member/aspirant
  • Putting new members/aspirants in a room which is uncomfortable in terms of noise, temperature, size, etc.
  • Abusive language or yelling directed at pledges/new members/aspirants
  • Forced tattooing or branding
  • The use of blindfolds
  • The wearing of uniformed clothing or abnormal clothing
  • Any combination of these activities

What have you seen? Tell us at

Still confused about what Hazing is?

Hazing Prevention.Org encourages you to ask these questions when considering whether or not something is hazing:

  • Would I feel comfortable participating in this activity if my parents were watching?
  • Would we get in trouble if a Student Conduct administrator walked by?
  • Am I being asked to keep these activities a secret?
  • Am I doing anything illegal?
  • Does participation violate my values or those of my organization?
  • Is it causing emotional distress or stress of any kind to myself or others?
  • If someone were injured, would I feel comfortable being investigated by the insurance carrier?
  • When I apply for jobs, can I take the onus of having a criminal arrest on my record?

What is a BYSTANDER?

A bystander is someone who witnesses a harmful act (in this case hazing) and does nothing to intervene. Look at what the University of Maine has to say about bystander behavior when it comes to hazing.

Note: documents in Portable Document Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader to view, download Adobe Acrobat Reader.


Hazing Prevention.Org shares that hazing and bullying are similar in that they are both methods of intimidation and both cause harm. Bullying though can happen at anytime and is generally used to exclude individuals from a group. Hazing occurs at specific period of time for potential group members as a tool for inclusion into a group.

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