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Hazing Policy

Hazing Policy


As part of its commitment to providing a safe and healthy campus environment for all students, faculty, staff and visitors, the University of Dayton prohibits all forms of hazing.  The purpose of this policy is to define hazing and to outline the procedures for reporting and adjudicating instances of hazing that may occur within the University community.


This policy applies to all University of Dayton students, Student Groups and Student Organizations.

Policy History

I. Effective Date: February 27, 2014

II. Approval: July 18, 2019; University President

III. History: 

  • Approved in original form:  February 27, 2014
  • Approved as amended:  July 18, 2019

IV. Maintenance of Policy: Vice President for Student Development


(a)  “Student Group” means a number of persons who are associated with the University and each other, but who have not registered, or are not required to register, as a student organization (e.g. athletic teams, musical or theatrical ensembles, academic or administrative units).

(b)  “Student Organization” means a number of persons who are associated with each other and who have registered with the University as a student organization under the Center Student Involvement for policies for recognized student organizations.

(c)  “Participants” means any student who directly/indirectly partakes in a prohibited act by leading, encouraging, witnessing or condoning the act in any manner. Failing to stop or report these actions as a bystander/witness may bring charges upon the individual.


The University of Dayton strictly prohibits hazing, which includes any planned/executed action or activity, by or against any active member, associate member, new member, pledge or potential member of an Organization or Group (see Definitions) that inflicts (whether intentionally, unintentionally, forcefully or recklessly) physical or mental harm, distress, anxiety, or which may demean, degrade, endanger, embarrass or disgrace any person, regardless of location, consent or intention of Participants.

Examples of hazing include but are not limited to forced consumption of food, alcohol, drugs or any other substance; forced physical activity; deprivation of food or sleep; physical acts of violence such as hitting, branding or paddling; head shaving; extended isolation or setting a group apart; creation of excessive fatigue; physical and psychological shocks; using activities, such as quests, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, road trips, interviews or signature books, as a means to exclude those who do not participate from admission to the organization; wearing apparel that is conspicuous or lewd; engaging in public stunts and buffoonery; morally degrading or humiliating games and activities; and late work sessions that interfere with scholastic activities.

Students may not imply that a person be shunned, removed, or unable to join/participate or maintain affiliation or membership in any Organization or Group for failing or refusing to partake in or submit to any form of a hazing activity. 

Procedural Considerations

  • Charters/Constitutions and Bylaws:  In addition to the foregoing, the University prohibits requiring or implying requirement to participate in any act that violates the Code of Conduct; the Center for Student Involvement policies, guidelines and requirements for recognized student organizations; local/state/federal law; a student organization’s charter/constitution/by-laws; the constitution /by-laws of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, National Panhellenic Conference, or North- American Interfraternity Conference; or rules of the Division of Athletics, NCAA, sport clubs, or intramurals.
  • Concurrent Legal Charges:  Although the University of Dayton’s Hazing Policy is significantly more stringent than Ohio law, violations of the Hazing Policy and/or Code of Conduct may also constitute violations of Ohio law.  Students may find themselves charged through the criminal justice system for incidents that have also been attributed to violations at the University. In these cases the University will generally proceed with the student conduct system concurrently with the legal system. The University does not offer legal advice/counsel to students facing criminal charges.
  • Individual Student Charges: In cases where the activity is performed by an individual member of an Organization or Group, the Organization or Group as a whole may be held responsible. Individual students may be charged separately through the student conduct system as well. Delegating or requesting another student, Organization or Group to perform any act that violates this Policy will result in charges of hazing being brought against the requesting student, Organization or Group as well as against the Organization, Group or individuals performing the act, regardless of affiliation.
  • Safety Concerns for Students who Report Hazing: Students who report possible hazing incidents will not be subject to individual charges of policy violations by the University if those violations were a direct result/cause/effect of the hazing. Additionally the University will work to make reasonable accommodations so that the reporting party can continue their academic pursuits. These accommodations include but are not limited to alternative housing, no contact orders, and academic accommodations. Any student who is concerned for their safety either due to ongoing hazing or in fear of retribution should consider speaking with a University staff member to gain an understanding of the services that can be made available in their situation.
  • Depth and Breadth of Process May Vary:  The level of any University hazing investigation may vary based on what is included in a report of hazing, what is learned in subsequent inquiries, the connection if any to an Organization or Group, etc.  Even if a “hazing” element of an investigation stops being pursued based on a lack of connection to an Organization or Group or other findings, other policy violations may still be pursued and investigated.
  • Individual Amnesty for Other Policy Violation(s):  Students who participate in a University hazing investigation or inquiry may, on a case-by-case basis, be offered amnesty for other policy violations (such as alcohol violations) for individual behavior disclosed as part of that investigation or inquiry.
  • Organization or Group Hazing:  When an Organization or Group is alleged to have engaged in hazing, the University reserves the right to impose different sanctions and processes than it might impose or adopt when handling an allegation of hazing directed at an individual.  More details are included in the Student Standards of Behavior and Code of Conduct, in the section addressing Student Organizations.

Reference Documents

  1. Current University of Dayton Student Handbook
  2. Ohio Revised Code §2903.31 Hazing
  3. Ohio Revised Code §2307.44 Hazing Civil Liability

For questions relating to the University policies of Student Development, please contact:

Bill Fischer, Vice President for Student Development