What is Hazing?

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Lehigh University definition of hazing: 

"Hazing is any action taken or situation created, whether on or off campus, to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment, or ridicule. Hazing includes but is not limited to any brutality of a physical nature, such as paddling, whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics, exposure to the elements, forced consumption of any food, liquor, drug or other substance, or any other forced physical activity that would subject the individual to physical harm or mental stress, such as sleep deprivation, forced exclusion from social contact, forced conduct which could result in extreme embarrassment, or any other forced activity which would adversely affect the mental health or dignity of the individual. Among prohibited activities are forced or coerced activities which create excessive fatigue; cause physical and psychological shocks; involve kidnapping; involve morally questionable quests, treasure hunts, scavenger hunts, or any other such activities; involve publicly wearing apparel that is conspicuous and not normally in good taste; cause students to engage in public stunts and buffoonery, morally degrading or humiliating games and activities, or late night activities which interfere with scholastic activities. Also prohibited are any activities that are in violation of federal, state, or local laws, this Code of Conduct, or accepted standards of good taste or propriety. For purposes of this definition, any activity described in this paragraph upon which the admission into or affiliation with an organization is directly or indirectly conditioned shall be presumed to be “forced or coerced” activity, the willingness of an individual to participate in such activity notwithstanding." 

SOURCE: Lehigh University Student Handbook

Statistic Snapshots

Campus Hazing Assessment

Hazing Prevention & Education Assessment Insight 2012-2015

Hazing Assessment Insight 2012

Hazing Assessment Insight Spring 2018

Lehigh Infographics 

Overall Hazing View

Hazing & Student Athletes

Hazing & Greek Life

Hazing & Student Organizations 



Types of Hazing


"Actions or activities that go against University or societal ideas of standards of conduct, behavior and good taste. An activity or attitude directed towards a ny new or active member which ridicules, humiliates or embarrasses intentionally or unintentionally."

  • Ignoring new members
  • Name calling
  • Any forms of demerits
  • Progress reports for new members
  • Requiring the formal addressing of members (Mr/Miss/Sir)
  • Duties only assigned to new members
  • Requiring new members to carry handbooks and obtain signatures of members or others
  • Trying to instill fear in new members for initiation or other group events
  • Depriving new members of privileges

"Includes any action or activity that causes mental anguish or physical discomfort. These actions and activities usually cause confusion, frustration, or unnecessary stress."

  • Verbal abuse
  • Any form of questioning under pressure or uncomfortable situation
  • Requiring new members to wear ridiculous costumes or perform ridiculous activities
  • Requiring new members to perform personal service to active members/veterans such as carrying books or running errands
Violent "Includes activities that could cause physical or emotional harm."
  • Forced alcohol consumption
  • Forced ingestion of any liquid or substance
  • Sexual violation
  • Assault including paddling, beating, burning, and branding

SOURCE: StopHazing.org

Harms of Hazing

Physical Trauma

Often it is the result of physical trauma that we first hear about hazing. This involves any incident where someone is physically injured or even so far as a death. 

Psychological Trauma

Shame or self-blame are more difficult to identify or report. However, negative psychological effects are just as detrimental to a victim of hazing, as well as their families. Examples include depression, suicide, poor grades, withdrawal from activities and shame. These effects are long-lasting; they can persist into adulthood. 

Previous Experiences/Hidden Harm

What we don't know about an individual has the potential to be the ultimate harm of hazing. "Baggage", or previous negative or stressful experiences, can increase an individual's susceptibility to serious repercussions if hazed. Examples of baggage can include, but are not limited to, depression or other mental health issues, military service in a war zone, having been the victim of sexual assault or physical/emotional abuse, a personal or family history of alcoholism, previous experience with hazing,  and having suffered the loss of friends or family members.

SOURCE: HazingPrevention.org