While recognizing the positive aspects of the Greek system, fraternities and sororities are often plagued by incidents of hazing. Although hazing is against fraternity and sorority policy and is illegal in most states, including New Jersey, hazing incidents still occur. They should not, and are expected to cease if they are occurring.
University officials are often called upon to deal with incidents involving fraternities, sororities and other student organizations ranging from minor pranks and disorderly conduct to far more serious situations resulting in injury and, in some instances, potential death. Hence, NJIT has consistently established and mandated a University Anti-Hazing Policy.
A. New Jersey State Criminal Statute
A person is guilty of hazing, a crime of the fourth degree, if, in connection with initiation of applicants to, or members of a student organization, he/she knowingly or recklessly organizes, promotes, facilitates, or engages in any conduct, other than competitive athletic events under the direction of authorized personnel for the purposes associated with team or individual sports, which places or may place another person in danger of bodily injury or which may adversely affect another person’s mental health or dignity.
A person is guilty of aggravated hazing, a crime of the third degree, if he/she commits an act prohibited in subsection (a) which results in serious bodily injury to another person.
A person commits a disorderly persons offense if the person knowingly fails to report the planning of a specific hazing incident or knowingly fails to report that a specific hazing incident has occurred to appropriate officials within an educational institution.
Notwithstanding any other provision of Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes to the contrary, consent shall not be available as a defense to a prosecution under this Act
Conduct constituting an offense under this Act may, at the discretion of the prosecuting attorney, be prosecuted under any other applicable provision of Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes.
Unequivocally, hazing is antithetical to the mission of New Jersey Institute of Technology, contrary to the academic and personal development of students, an affront to the student's dignity, and a violation of New Jersey criminal statute (N.J.S.2C:40-3 et seq.). In addition, hazing is in violation of the constitutions of the NJIT Inter Fraternity/Sorority Council and the Greek Letter Council.
New Jersey Institute of Technology believes that true brotherhood and sisterhood is nurtured in an atmosphere of educational, social and moral responsibility, respect for duly constituted authority, and loyalty to the principles of higher education. Therefore, it is imperative and expected that all activities and programs pertaining to the initiation and pre-initiation activities of Greek letter and other student organizations reinforce the belief in the preservation of human dignity. Any and all activities which compromise these premises have no rightful place on this campus
New Jersey Institute of Technology joins with the Fraternity Executives Association, the National Interfraternity Conference and the National Panhellenic Conference in defining hazing as:
Any action taken or situation created, intentionally or however communicated, whether on or off fraternity premises, to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment, or ridicule. Such activities and situations may include, but are not limited to: use of alcohol; paddling in any form; creation of excessive fatigue; physical and psychological shocks; quests, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, road trips or any other such activities carried on outside or inside the confines of the chapter house; wearing of public apparel which is conspicuous and not normally in good taste; engaging in public stunts and buffoonery; morally degrading or humiliating games and activities; and any other activities which are not consistent with fraternal law, ritual or policy, or the regulation and policies of the educational institution.
The consent of the victimized party does not constitute a defense against being prosecuted or sanctioned. The above definition of hazing should not be construed as an attempt to supersede or nullify any portion of the New Jersey State criminal code. Alleged acts of hazing will be referred to the Dean of Student Services for investigation and adjudication.