National Hazing Prevention Week
The belief that "hazing is a part of college" is taking a hit from people trying to put an end to the practice. But hazing persists.
And although a lot of progress has been made, University of Florida officials said there is still room for improvement.
Assistant Vice President to the Dean of Students, Jen Day Shaw said, "If the goal is to help a new group of students join an organization and be part of an organization, you know, does that mean that it needs to be done with fear or pain or humiliation?"
The University of Florida said no, it doesn't, by enacting strict rules to deter hazing of any kind at the university.
Shaw said by working with new students, their families and the heads of campus organizations, new traditions can be established that have nothing to do with hazing.
And one student in this year's pledge class says it seems to be working.
Michael Pascual said, "People like to talk...it's just like with anything...you hear horror stories about every field...but there has been none (hazing), so it's kind of been a pleasant surprise."
The state of Florida has one of the nations most strict laws regarding hazing, but according to hazingprevention.org, it's still a problem because of the culture in many organizations.
Allison Swick-Duttine is on the Board of Directors at hazing prevention.org and she said, "Even those things that people define as innocuous, that probably couldn't cause harm, often lead to harm...that's the problem with hazing in any type of organization...what starts out as maybe something that may seem minor, over time it typically escalates out of control."
And Swick-Duttine said that no organization is immune, with churches and high schools affected right along with sororities, fraternities and sports teams. That's why hazingprevention.org says their job is far from done.
For more information on the hazing prevention go to hazingprevention.org.
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