1.0 Purpose

1.1. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that students at Germanna Community College (hereinafter College) are not subjected to any type of hazing. It is the responsibility of all individuals associated with the College to encourage an atmosphere of learning, social responsibility, and respect for human dignity. Hazing is an unproductive and hazardous activity that is incongruent with our institutional values and has no place at this College, either on or off campus. Hazing is injurious to the individuals involved and to the College itself.

1.2. This policy applies to all persons and groups associated with the College, including but not limited to, administrators, faculty, club and organization advisors, staff, and students.

1.3. The College shall designate a formal and consistent process for receiving hazing complaints, require investigations into such reports, and ensure compliance with this policy.

2.0 Policy

2.1. Hazing is defined as to recklessly or intentionally endanger the health or safety of a student or students or to inflict bodily injury on a student or students in connection with or for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a club, organization, association, or student body regardless of whether the student or students so endangered or injured participated voluntarily in the relevant activity.

2.2. Hazing shall include but is not limited to, forcing, compelling, requiring, encouraging, or expecting, whether direct or implied, any individual to participate in the following actions or activities:

     2.2.1. Any form of psychological hazing as defined in this policy

     2.2.2. Any physical activity which is intended to harass, harm, or punish an individual

     2.2.3. Binding or restricting an individual as to restrict their movement in any way

     2.2.4. Burning, branding, or tattooing any part of the body

     2.2.5. Burying items, individuals, or any substance

     2.2.6. Confinement

     2.2.7. Depriving students of sufficient sleep

     2.2.8. Excursions or road trips, outside of college-sponsored academic or co-curricular field trips

     2.2.9. Exposure to uncomfortable elements

     2.2.10. Forcing consumption of alcohol or any substance, legal or illegal

     2.2.11. Interrogating an individual in an intimidating or threatening manner

     2.2.12. Kidnapping

     2.2.13. Misleading prospective members into believing they may be hurt during initiation

     2.2.14. Misleading prospective members to believe they will not become members unless they complete certain tasks or behave in a certain way

     2.2.15. Nudity

     2.2.16. Paddling

     2.2.17. Servitude

     2.2.18. Spraying, painting, pelleting any substance

     2.2.19. Verbal abuse

     2.2.20. Wearing in public apparel which is conspicuous and/or indecent

2.3. Hazing, as defined in this policy, is prohibited under the Code of Virginia. §18.2-56 of the Code of Virginia states: “It shall be unlawful to haze, or otherwise mistreat so as to cause bodily injury, any student at any school, college, or university. Any person found guilty thereof shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, unless the injury would be such as to constitute a felony, and in that even the punishment shall be inflicted as is otherwise provided by law for the punishment of such a felony. Any person receiving bodily injury by hazing or mistreatment shall have a right to sue, civilly, the person or persons guilty thereof, whether adults or infants. The president, or other presiding official of any school, college, or university, receiving appropriations from the State treasury shall, upon satisfactory proof of guilt of any student found guilty of hazing or mistreating another student so as to cause bodily injury, expel such student so found guilty, and shall make report thereof to the attorney for the Commonwealth of the county or city in which such school, college, or university is, who shall present the same to the grand jury of such city or county convened next after such report is made to him.”

2.4. Any individual or organization in violation of this policy will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, including but not limited to expulsion.

2.5. Psychological hazing is defined as any act which is likely to compromise an individual’s dignity, cause embarrassment, shame, or emotional distress, or cause an individual to be the object or malicious amusement or ridicule.

2.6. An individual may not consent to being hazed, and a victim’s voluntary or willful participation in hazing activities will not be considered as a defense against a violation of the hazing policy by an individual or organization.

2.7. This policy encompasses all acts of hazing that occur whether on or off campus. As such, an act of hazing by an individual or organization will be viewed by the College as a violation of its hazing policy, regardless of where the act of hazing took place.

3.0 Procedures

3.1. Reporting: The College encourages individuals to promptly report any incidents of hazing to any faculty, staff, administrator, or College Police in person, by phone, or via electronic communication. Additionally, individuals can report any incidents of hazing online via the Incident Report Form and may do so anonymously.

3.2. Investigation: The Dean of Student Development or designee will promptly investigate any allegations of hazing on or off campus in accordance with federal and state laws and the College’s Students Rights and Responsibilities. The findings of the investigation shall be reported in accordance with the College’s reporting system.

3.3. Disciplinary Action: Any individual or organization found to be in violation of this policy shall be subject to the procedures set forth in the College’s Students Rights and Responsibilities and may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action in accordance with applicable federal and state law.

3.3.1. Individual & Organization Responsibility: Both individuals and organizations may be held responsible for their actions and      participation in incidents of hazing. If an investigation concludes that an individual or individuals directed, engaged in, aided, or otherwise participated in, actively or passively, an incident of hazing, disciplinary action may be imposed against the individual(s). If the investigation concludes that an organization knowingly permitted, authorized, or condoned hazing, disciplinary action may be imposed against the entire organization.

3.3.2. Retaliation: It shall be a violation of this policy for an individual or organization to retaliate against a student or other person for reporting a suspected incident of hazing or cooperating in any investigation or disciplinary proceeding regarding an incident of hazing.

4.0 Definitions

4.1. “Administrator” means a president, vice president, dean, director of a program or campus office, or designee of one of the aforementioned individuals.

4.2. “Faculty” and “Staff” means any person employed directly by or retained through a contract with the College, including an advisor or supervisor of an organization, professor, or intern.

4.3. “Organization” means association, team, club, cooperative, corps, order, society, or other similar group, whose members primarily are students at the College.

4.4. “Student” means any person who is enrolled in or matriculating from the College, registered or in attendance in a program operated by the College, or who has been accepted for admission into any program operated by the College.

5.0 References

5.1 Model Policy Regarding the Prevention of and Appropriate Disciplinary Action for Hazing at Virginia’s Instruction of Higher Education

5.2 Hazing Policy of the University of Mary Washington

5.3 § 18.2-56. Code of Virginia 

6.0 Point of Contact

6.1 Dean of Student Development

7.0 Approval and Revision Dates

Cabinet: 05/18/22
Faculty Senate:
Department Chairs:
Leadership Council: First Reading – 06/30/22 Approval – 07/28/22

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