SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif- Cal Poly has launched an investigation into a sorority, Chi Delta Theta, for alleged hazing, after the school recently received an anonymous tip.
It's an issue the school said its taking very seriously. The school said they launch about 3 investigations a year for hazing. Many students on campus can't name a hazing incident, but the school is still having a hard time shaking the stereotype after a hazing incident went very wrong several years ago.
It's glorified in pop culture as a fun way to initiate people into a new group but hazing has become a serious issue for college campuses across the country. In 2008, 18-year-old Carson Starkey went through a hazing ritual pledging for a Cal Poly fraternity that cost him his life. Since then, students have taken what happened to heart.
"That was an unnecessary death and I don't want any of my sisters to feel that they have to do anything in order to get our love, because we love all our sisters and they don't have to prove it to us," said Jackie Nunez, a sorority sister. With a new group of students coming in every year, the school finds education is the best tool to prevent hazing. "We do a very aggressive and thorough education program every year and each quarter that addresses hazing, what is hazing, how not to do hazing," said the Dean of Students, Jean Decosta.
Hazing can range in severity, in the case of Starkey, he was forced to drink a bag full of alcoholic beverages in about an hour and a half. Many students on campus said times have changed, and they won't put up with the age old ritual. "We feel that hazing is not a necessary part of being in a sorority and not part of sorority life," said Nunez.
Chi Delta Theta's activities have been suspended, the school said the investigation should be wrapped up in the coming weeks. Cal Poly has a zero tolerance policy for hazing, the punishment can range from suspension of all duties and activities to disaffiliation with the university permanently.
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