UT Disciplines Two Fraternities
UT has disciplined two fraternities for alleged hazing incidents that occurred early in the fall semester.
Sigma Chi is on probation due to hazing activities involving food and garbage on August 27. The two-year probation bans the chapter from all social events and requires each member to perform community service. The chapter also must present a fraternity-wide hazing re-education and prevention program and pay to install security cameras in the public areas and exterior of its house. The chapter accepted the sanctions and has agreed to comply with the terms.
Lambda Chi Alpha has been placed on interim suspension pending the outcome of an ongoing investigation involving hazing on September 10. The investigation surrounds reports of alleged forcing of pledges to perform a militaristic exercise regimen. One pledge sustained a minor injury.
The chapter may not engage in formal activities on or off campus. At the conclusion of the investigation, the university will recommend sanctions, which the chapter can accept or request a hearing on. The interim suspension will remain intact until the process is complete.
“We will not tolerate hazing of any kind. We take immediate action to investigate any reports and take the appropriate action,” said Jeff Cathey, associate dean of students.
In April, a UT task force released a report with recommendations for improving fraternity and sorority life and culture on campus. The group of alumni, students, faculty, and staff recommended several changes that have resulted in more mandatory member and chapter education and increased communication among chapters as well as with the dean of students. The task force’s work also led to changes in the judicial process involving fraternity and sorority organizations to resolve cases sooner.
Additionally, all on-campus fraternities are required to have security Thursday through Saturday evening at the houses. The Dean of Students’ Office has also expanded its Standards of Excellence program to make all activities, positive and negative, of each fraternity and sorority chapter public on its website.
Karen Simsen (865-974-5186, firstname.lastname@example.org)