Binghamton University Faces Hazing

By Perry Russom

April 13, 2012 Updated Apr 13, 2012 at 5:19 PM EST

Vestal, NY (WBNG Binghamton) - Binghamton University received what it calls an alarmingly high number of complaints about Greek Life hazing.

This resulted in the issuing of a "cease and desist" order from the University to all pledging.

"The actions of few shouldn't judge the actions of other frats and sororities on campus," said BU junior Scott Sommer.

"I think they should have cracked down on it much earlier and it's not the best way to handle it," said BU freshman Jackie Gole.

"It should have been dealt with from the beginning."

The BU student handbook defines hazing as "any action taken or situation created involving prospective or new members of a group...which would be perceived by a reasonable person as likely to produce mental or physical discomfort, harm, stress, embarrassment, harassment or ridicule."

This applies even if the pledges agree to the activities.

Some of the actions that are listed in the handbook include drinking alcohol, paddling and creating excessive fatigue.

"I don't think you should go through that to make friends," said Gole.

"I have friends at other schools who are in frats and sororities who don't haze and they have just as much fun as the ones that do."

"I don't think hazing is becoming a bigger issue. I think what's becoming a bigger issue is people feeling uncomfortable with that," said BU junior Ryan Laduc.

"Personally, I don't think it's the right thing, but as a society, we accept it,"BU freshman Elias Batista.

A fraternity member said the consensus is that fraternities and sororities will continue to pledge even with the cease and desist order.

Action News also reached out the Binghamton University President, Dr. Harvey Stenger who could not comment in depth, but did talk about overall student safety.

"The safety of the 15,000 student that I'm responsible for is the highest priority of my presidency. I'm going to be very interested in what happened and how we can take corrective actions to make sure everyone is maximizing the safety of our students," says Stenger.

Action News also reached out to the Executive Director of the Delta Chi Fraternity, Raymond D. Galbreth who says that the organization abolished the so-called "Hell week" in 1929.

"Any member of Delta Chi that says they were not told what to do, or not to do would be living in a cave," says Galbreth.

Binghamton University has created a petition process to allow groups not under investigation for violations to move forward with inductions upon approval.