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Hazing Information for Parents

The first few weeks on campus can be an exciting and stressful time for new students and returning students alike. A major emphasis is placed on getting involved and finding a student's place on campus. For many students, they make their connection and find their place through organizations and sports teams, making friends for life and developing essential skills to be successful after college.  However, while involvement can be a hugely beneficial experience, we have been reminded by recent news coverage across the country that the process of joining teams and organizations is not always a positive one due to the potential for hazing.

Hazing Definition

As stated in the Drexel University Hazing Prevention Policy, hazing is any action taken or situation created involving new or returning organization/group members as a part of joining, maintaining membership or holding office in that organization that Violates state or federal law, humiliates or degrades and individual or group, or intentionally or unintentionally endangers an individual – mentally, physically or emotionally regardless of the individual’s willingness to participate.

Drexel's Hazing Prevention Efforts

At Drexel we have taken a proactive stance on hazing and work with student organizations and teams to ensure this process of joining teams and organizations is both fun and safe. We kick off the year with Hazing Prevention Awareness Week, held during week 2 of the fall term. Hazing Prevention Awareness Week (HPAW) is part of a national initiative held at numerous universities across the country that raises awareness of the issue, educates students, faculty, and staff about hazing alternatives, empowers students to stand up against hazing, and shows a united University community against hazing. This year we hosted education for student athletes, fraternity and sorority members, and the general student population both online via social media and in person. Check out pictures from the week on our Dragons Against Hazing Facebook page.

Drexel was recognized as the most innovative campus related to hazing prevention in 2012 by and received the Zeta Tau Alpha Award for Innovation in Hazing Prevention and Education. The award included a $10,000 grant to support future hazing prevention initiatives and the University is one of only 4 campuses nationwide recognized since 2010.

Warning Signs

Despite our best efforts to prevent hazing on campus and in our community, we look to parents, family members and friends to alert us of any concerns related to hazing. Some warning signs to look for in your student if he/she is joining a student organization, fraternity, sorority or sport team include:

  • Sudden change in your student's communication with you, including frequency, length and general tone, surrounding the time the student is joining the group
  • Sudden change in willingness to share the activities he/she is involved in with the organization
  • Changes in sleeping and eating patterns, anxiety or anger level
  • Sudden changes in academic performance
  • Complaint of new physical ailments – exhaustion, broken bones, sprains, cuts, burns, or stomach or headaches and reasoning of how the injuries happened don’t quite seem to make sense
  • Discussion of wanting to leave the organization/team but being scared

Talking to Your Student about Hazing

(coming soon)

What to do if you think your student is being hazed

If you have any concerns related to potential hazing, please call the Dean of Students office at (215) 895-2506 or email or