National Hazing Prevention Week Spotlight: University of Central Florida

To celebrate National Hazing Prevention Week, we’re highlighting the efforts of some of the institutions participating in the Hazing Prevention Consortium. We begin with the University of Central Florida.

For the students, staff, and administrators that make up the hazing prevention coalition at the University of Central Florida (UCF), the activities of National Hazing Prevention Week will be the culmination of a planning process that began last May and developed significantly over the course of the summer. UCF’s schedule for National Hazing Prevention Week ambitiously features workshops providing introductory information to help students understand hazing and recognize it as a problem, case study competitions for graduate students, and bystander intervention training, amongst numerous other prevention efforts. Perhaps the most innovative of these prevention efforts is a session entitled Your Life On Trial, a mock student conduct case which aims to provide transparency to the process by which hazing cases are processed on campus.

“We thought creatively about how to get information to students and community members,” says Dr. Germayne Graham, Associate Director of the LEAD Scholars Academy at UCF and liaison to the HPC. According to Graham, such breadth of programming is the result of lessons learned from attending the 2015 HPC Summit, combined with strong institutional support and leadership that encouraged a variety of stakeholders, particularly students, to get involved. “The biggest part is the students,” says Graham, “we have representation from students involved in the marching band, athletics, ROTC, fraternity and sorority life, student affairs, student conduct, and leadership programs.” These students, along with staff members and faculty, were enthusiastically encouraged to get involved by the Dean of Students-highlighting the impact of visible messaging on campus hazing prevention efforts.

Importantly, UCF hopes that such diverse programs will have lasting impact and change student behavior and attitudes towards hazing. Therefore, they are conducting an evaluation for each of the initiatives this week to determine what students have learned and are also following up in three months in order to see if the programing resulted in pro-social behaviors that persist.

A video promoting National Hazing Prevention Week at UCF is featured below: