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  #46  
Old 01-24-2018, 02:06 PM
Kevin Kevin is offline
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Originally Posted by PhilTau View Post
To easy for creative college students to get around. For example, from my own long ago experiences, well led and organized pledge classes would haze the actives back.
Right. My father's pledge class got so pissed at their pledge educator that they kidnapped him and actually flew him out to northwest Oklahoma and handcuffed him in his underwear to an oil rig.

Checks and balances.
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  #47  
Old 01-24-2018, 02:26 PM
ASTalumna06 ASTalumna06 is offline
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Originally Posted by DGTess View Post
As long as at least one definition of "hazing" is "making pledges do (or expecting pledges to do) something actives are not required to" the periods will get shorter and shorter. That's an easy solution to one facet, and organizations are, in general, open to easy solutions."
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Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
Is the above-stated definition really your organization's rules or is it folklore? As far as I know, basically everyone is reading from the FIPG definition for our official hazing definition. Do NPC groups go beyond that definition officially, or is it more a directive in that if you don't ask pledges to do something actives are not required to do, then you're probably okay?
When I was pledging, my class was required to plan our own fundraiser and take part in our own philanthropy or community service project. We had help from our new member educators, but we essentially did everything on our own - planning and execution. Then we were no longer allowed to do this because it meant we were requiring new members to do things that weren't required of the initiated sisters. However, we can have new members help the initiated sisters plan and attend fundraisers and philanthropy projects in which the rest of the chapter is involved.

I loved participating in those events with my pledge sisters. It gave us ownership over the projects, helped us understand some of the hard work that goes into being an active member, and we simply had fun.

It's crazy to think that something like that could be considered "hazing". But yes, I think organizations are aiming for the unambiguous, all-or-nothing approach.
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Last edited by ASTalumna06; 01-24-2018 at 02:32 PM.
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  #48  
Old 01-24-2018, 03:24 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by Kevin View Post
It makes you question national priorities. Are national organizations about shorter pledge periods to maximize initiation fees paid or are they about quality brotherhood/sisterhood? I know that's a simplistic way of laying things out, but I would argue there's a correlation between a challenging new member process (not one involving hazing [but let's be honest, things which according to the FIPG are "hazing" are not hazing as described in any criminal statutes]) and members getting out of the organization the things they joined for.
Many moons ago, our Greek advisor (who sucked) pushed for first semester freshmen women to rush "so we can get them before they know better." I definitely think that's part of it.

I only pledged for 6 weeks, but there were also only 35 active sisters to get to know. I can't imagine that would be enough time to get to know the members in a SEC size chapter, let alone feel you were becoming an active part of the chapter and the Greek community. It's like the objective is to get the pledges (and the initiated sisters) so caught up in a whirlwind that you don't have time to think twice (on either side) before initiation.
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  #49  
Old 01-24-2018, 05:05 PM
Kevin Kevin is offline
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Originally Posted by ASTalumna06 View Post
It's crazy to think that something like that could be considered "hazing". But yes, I think organizations are aiming for the unambiguous, all-or-nothing approach.
The things you described would absolutely not be hazing with Sigma Nu, assuming that other aspects of the weren't hazing as defined by the standard FIPG definition. I suppose our national office and legislative assemblies trust our members and advisers enough to know the difference.

And if the answer is "If I told you, I'd have to kill you," I totally understand, but I'm wondering how exactly Alpha Sigma Theta has this rule stating you can't require a new member to do anything different from an initiate legislated.

My interest here is to see whether this is an actual promulgated rule similar in all NPC groups or it is unwritten policy.
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  #50  
Old 01-24-2018, 06:14 PM
DaffyKD DaffyKD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASTalumna06 View Post
When I was pledging, my class was required to plan our own fundraiser and take part in our own philanthropy or community service project. We had help from our new member educators, but we essentially did everything on our own - planning and execution. Then we were no longer allowed to do this because it meant we were requiring new members to do things that weren't required of the initiated sisters. However, we can have new members help the initiated sisters plan and attend fundraisers and philanthropy projects in which the rest of the chapter is involved.

I loved participating in those events with my pledge sisters. It gave us ownership over the projects, helped us understand some of the hard work that goes into being an active member, and we simply had fun.

It's crazy to think that something like that could be considered "hazing". But yes, I think organizations are aiming for the unambiguous, all-or-nothing approach.
Back in the prehistoric days when I was a pledge, one of our requirements for initiation was to put on a party for the initiated members. Since this meant we had to have some cash available, one of my pledge sisters talked to a donut store about giving us donuts. They gave us a ton of stale donuts. We went to all the Greek houses and dorms and sold every last one of them. My best friend and I still laugh about it today.

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  #51  
Old 01-24-2018, 06:27 PM
Cheerio Cheerio is offline
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Originally Posted by DaffyKD View Post
Back in the prehistoric days when I was a pledge, one of our requirements for initiation was to put on a party for the initiated members. Since this meant we had to have some cash available, one of my pledge sisters talked to a donut store about giving us donuts. They gave us a ton of stale donuts. We went to all the Greek houses and dorms and sold every last one of them. My best friend and I still laugh about it today.

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  #52  
Old 01-24-2018, 06:43 PM
clemsongirl clemsongirl is offline
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Alpha Delta Pi defines hazing, pulled straight from our national bylaws, as "any situation that creates mental or physical abuse, discomfort, embarrassment, ridicule, or harassment, whether on or away from sorority property."


I understand the concerns regarding the shortness of the new member period, but I chafe at little at all the war stories told of "the good ole days" where pledge semesters were longer and pledge classes were expected to do more to earn initiation. The implication is that members these days are somehow not as good as they were before, but I haven't seen anything to back this up besides the occasional undergrad coming on this board and asking if they can change sororities or fraternities. Are we seeing declines in membership retention, either in the new member period and as actives? Are current members not paying their dues and becoming financially delinquent with increasing regularity? Essentially, what negative impacts from shortened new member periods and less responsibilities being placed exclusively on new members are we seeing? From my vantage point, fraternities and sororities across all councils are larger, raising more money for philanthropy and donating more service hours than they ever have before. I can't claim that shortened new member periods and responsibilities caused this growth, but clearly these changes haven't hurt it.


I see the limiting of length of pledge periods and of activities within them as a shifting of risk on behalf of the national orgs, and I don't think it's entirely unwarranted. Here's a quote from an article that references Pi Delta Psi's fraternity lawyer during the sentencing of the national org:

The fraternity’s “Crossing Over” initiation rituals “involved some physicality, but they certainly did not involve the level of physicality, the level of inhumanity, and the depravity of the individuals who are also coming before the court,” he said.

As we've discussed on here, what does "some physicality" mean? Where is that line drawn? While obviously physical hazing and requiring tasks of new members are not equivalent in severity, I can see why national organizations would create an engaging new member experience that does not involve tasks exclusive to new members. It's a reduction of risk in a field that has had so many lawsuits some fraternities have almost lost insurance coverage over it. Then, when a chapter does do something that violates these policies, the national org can cut that chapter loose and say "we have a zero-tolerance policy for what they did and they therefore should not be covered by our insurance".

I don't doubt that the experiences y'all had as new members were educational and rewarding, and I don't feel like I'm being personally attacked in any way, but as the youngest regular poster on here and the only one (that I know of) who went through a modern new member experience I felt compelled to stand up for myself and the incredible fraternity and sorority members my age I know.
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  #53  
Old 01-24-2018, 07:21 PM
CaliAggie CaliAggie is offline
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Mind blowing: literally days after the Harley Barber story blows up, a student-athlete at Georgia State University drops the n-word on her Finsta. She was suspended from the soccer team and has withdrawn from school after the ensuing backlash.

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/201...ended_lea.html

Apologies because this isn't directly GLO related, but illustrative of how NOTHING is kept secret on social media, even Finsta accounts that is only shared with one's closest friends. Not news to any of you all, but another proof point to go along with the Harley Barber incident that can be applied towards chapters' online & social media education.
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  #54  
Old 01-24-2018, 09:06 PM
APhi2KD APhi2KD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clemsongirl View Post
I understand the concerns regarding the shortness of the new member period, but I chafe at little at all the war stories told of "the good ole days" where pledge semesters were longer and pledge classes were expected to do more to earn initiation. The implication is that members these days are somehow not as good as they were before, but I haven't seen anything to back this up besides the occasional undergrad coming on this board and asking if they can change sororities or fraternities.
I don't think anyone is suggesting that at all! Other than the extreme cases like the one we're discussing, I don't think there would be a great purging of new members who were hiding secrets. A few bad apples would have time to openly rot, but it wouldn't be statistically significant. I don't think for one moment that the students coming into GLOs are any worse than their predecessors.

And I think the pace of "new membership" is insane. New college students trying to adjust, keep their grades up, get to know their sisters, having to learn enough about their sorority to pass any tests they may have, along with fundraisers, mixers, homecoming, etc. is just whacked, imo.

While I was happy to see my daughter initiated and not have to wait, she was one busy girl!
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Originally Posted by clemsongirl View Post
I see the limiting of length of pledge periods and of activities within them as a shifting of risk on behalf of the national orgs, and I don't think it's entirely unwarranted.
Obviously, lowering risk is still very much warranted. I totally get the NEED to end hazing, but it is still going on in some orgs.

I was amazed when I learned 7 out of 8 sororities on my daughter's campus initiate within 6-10 weeks. Hazing was my guess, as they are no longer "pledges", no longer wear their pins, etc.

I was NOT hazed in any way, neither was my daughter. But I loved wearing my ribbon, then my pledge pin, and I loved my pledge experience. We were "kidnapped", but it was just for a fun sleepover. I think we had more time to bond as a pledge class and that was important.

There are pros and cons.
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  #55  
Old 01-25-2018, 08:49 PM
NYCMS NYCMS is offline
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Originally Posted by clemsongirl View Post
I understand the concerns regarding the shortness of the new member period, but I chafe at little at all the war stories told of "the good ole days" where pledge semesters were longer and pledge classes were expected to do more to earn initiation. The implication is that members these days are somehow not as good as they were before
I agree with APhi2KD that no-one is saying that members these days aren't as good as those in days gone by. Not so.

Let me explain what I meant when I said we had "earn" membership. We did have to "earn" initiation because back then you had to make a baseline GPA in order to be initiated. If you didn't make that GPA after 1st semester, you had one more semester to make it. If you didn't make it after two semesters, you were de-pledged.

I do believe a longer pledgeship allows for a deeper experience. Everything from our ribbon pinning, then getting pledge pins, pledge retreats, weekly pledge meetings, weekly formal dinners, etc. - enabled us to get to know our pledge sisters and actives more fully because they took place over many months. That was possible even in a large chapter (mine had 165 girls, big for the late 70's at a Greek-competitive campus) because of the time frame.

On another but related note - is immediate initiation a Panhellenic rule? Or can sororities make their own decisions?

Last edited by NYCMS; 01-25-2018 at 09:26 PM.
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  #56  
Old 01-26-2018, 12:26 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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I don't think any NPC has literal immediate initiation. It is just very, very, extremely difficult to depledge someone unless there are really obvious and glaring reasons. And the one size fits all, nationally mandated pledge programs don't make it any easier to see those reasons.
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  #57  
Old 01-26-2018, 01:30 PM
NYCMS NYCMS is offline
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I don't think any NPC has literal immediate initiation. It is just very, very, extremely difficult to depledge someone unless there are really obvious and glaring reasons. And the one size fits all, nationally mandated pledge programs don't make it any easier to see those reasons.
I don't know of any that are immediate initiation either.

Maybe it was easier to de-pledge someone back in the day - our chapter based it on not making one's grades for two semesters - as well as any super serious standards violations which we never, thankfully, had and I think that's still grounds for de-pledging or even de-activation as we've seen with the Alabama member.

From an academic standpoint, I can understand de-pledging since if someone can't make a 2.0 either semester, then they've got bigger things to handle. Even with this low bar, there were usually 2 or 3 girls who didn't make it - usually from being on their own the first time and not knowing how to manage their time. As I mentioned, my chapter only de-pledged one girl for this in my four years as a member. It was very rare.

And I knew a girl from my hometown whose chapter de-pledged her (also when initiation was 2nd semester) because she was so wild - I mean wild beyond wild - that it became a very serious standards issue. She was given the opportunity several times to clean up her act, but never did. That I can understand and support too.

Last edited by NYCMS; 01-26-2018 at 01:55 PM.
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  #58  
Old 01-26-2018, 04:10 PM
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DGTess DGTess is offline
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Originally Posted by NYCMS View Post
I don't know of any that are immediate initiation either.

Maybe it was easier to de-pledge someone back in the day - our chapter based it on not making one's grades for two semesters - as well as any super serious standards violations which we never, thankfully, had and I think that's still grounds for de-pledging or even de-activation as we've seen with the Alabama member.

From an academic standpoint, I can understand de-pledging since if someone can't make a 2.0 either semester, then they've got bigger things to handle. Even with this low bar, there were usually 2 or 3 girls who didn't make it - usually from being on their own the first time and not knowing how to manage their time. As I mentioned, my chapter only de-pledged one girl for this in my four years as a member. It was very rare.

And I knew a girl from my hometown whose chapter de-pledged her (also when initiation was 2nd semester) because she was so wild - I mean wild beyond wild - that it became a very serious standards issue. She was given the opportunity several times to clean up her act, but never did. That I can understand and support too.
In my teeny-tiny chapter (25 women total) I only remember depledging one person. She, over the course of several weeks, proved herself nearly unable to tell the truth about anything. I'm not sure we would have been as certain if our pledge period had been only 6 weeks, even with that small a chapter.
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  #59  
Old 01-26-2018, 04:46 PM
hockeyfan hockeyfan is offline
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Originally Posted by clemsongirl View Post
I understand the concerns regarding the shortness of the new member period, but I chafe at little at all the war stories told of "the good ole days" where pledge semesters were longer and pledge classes were expected to do more to earn initiation.
I was initiated less than a year ago and I just wanted to hop in and say that I agree with you. I don't mean to invalidate or lessen anyone else's experience, but I find nostalgia is an easy trap to fall into. Everything seems better in hindsight. While I also understand concerns about the shortness of the new member period, I really do think there are ways to combat the supposed lack of knowledge recent initiates have. MY chapter required us to basically memorize every fact about Kappa Delta in order to pass. In another chapter on my campus, the VP of education walked out of the room before the exam began and told them to Google anything they couldn't remember. I feel that I know a GREAT deal about Kappa Delta both nationally and within my chapter. My friends in that other chapter do not, even though our new member periods were the same length.

I am also wary of the notion, often brought up by fraternity men on my campus who question the new member process for sororities, that a new member experience without hazing cannot possibly "bond" people together. I think this is a sad misunderstanding of the difference between healthy bonding and the psychological phenomenon of trauma bonding - no matter how minor this trauma may seem to someone who "earned it" more. One of my closest friends from summer camp is currently being treated for PTSD because of hazing she experienced in her varsity sports team in high school - hazing I'm sure many people would justify as her "earning" her position as a member of the team. But I would much rather follow seemingly arbitrary rules about transportation or mandatory events than have one of my sisters psychologically impacted by how our new member process made her feel. We give up some things to gain others.
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  #60  
Old 01-26-2018, 06:32 PM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is offline
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Old broad here who has spent many years advising chapters. It is not yearning for the "good ol' days" we base our opinion of the current abbreviated pledge period on, but the fact that initiation is no longer worked for; short pledge, excuse me, new member periods, showering the new members with gift, after gift, after gift, makes for members who don't fully appreciate the gift of membership. Heck,many of them don't fully know the history of the org. they were just initiated into! It should be looked on as a privilege, but many these days look on initiation as an entitlement. And please understand that earning initiation does not necessarily mean hazing.

We were told that the shortened new member period was, in part, inacted to help cut down on hazing, yet we still see chapters on probation or closed for hazing. If I had a vote, I would vote for a semester long "new member" period. It would allow the new members to learn more in-depth history of their sorority and chapter, as well as allow them to fully understand the obligation they were about to undertake, but would give them more time to decide if sorority life was for them, and would allow the chapter more time to get to know the new members and determine whether they were worthy of the gift of membership.
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