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The University forbids the practice or act of hazing among students or within student organizations. Hazing is defined as any activity (on or off campus) that subjects a person, with or without their consent, to the risk of bodily harm or emotional distress, or causes or encourages behaviors that would be a violation of law or University policy, for the purpose of initiating, promoting, fostering, or confirming any form of affiliation with a student group or organization (University-recognized or not). Violations of this policy may result in sanctions up to the dissolution of the organization and expulsion of students involved.

Definitions of Discrimination and Harassment

Discrimination refers to the treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person based on the group, class, or category to which that person belongs, rather than on individual merit. When these types of discriminatory actions threaten, intimidate, coerce, or create a hostile and uncomfortable environment for a person, then they are also considered harassment. It is also against policy to harass a person when it means that benefits, privileges, and opportunities are withheld, or are otherwise attached to the harassing behavior. Harassment consists of unwelcome conduct which also includes, but is not limited to, verbal, non-verbal, physical, communication, and/or visual actions. Harassment is generally defined as a course of conduct which annoys, threatens, intimidates, or puts a person in fear for their safety or security. Harassment is any unwanted, unwelcomed, and uninvited behavior that demeans, threatens, or offends the victim and results in a hostile environment for the victim. Communication that is unwanted and pervasive is also unacceptable. Behaviors and/or actions that are considered inappropriate and will not be tolerated include, but are not limited to, creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive learning, living, or work environment, inflicting psychological or emotional harm on another, and/or unreasonably interfering with a persons educational, work, or living environment which has the purpose of violating a persons sense of worth or creating a hostile environment for that person. The frequency of the harassment will also be considered, especially in cases of harassment by communication.

Examples of ways in which any of these may happen include, but are not limited to:

  • Vulgar or offensive language or comments
  • Use of stereotypes
  • Threats
  • Inappropriate email, instant messaging (IM), blogs, tweets, posts
  • Lewd or discriminatory jokes
  • Demeaning or humiliating remarks  
  • Epithets or slurs
  • Teasing
  • Offensive personal questions
  • Repeated date or sex requests
Physical Behaviors
  • Assault
  • Vandalism
  • Hazing
  • Inappropriate touching
  • Cold shoulder treatment
Non-Verbal actions
  • Offensive materials
  • Gestures
  • Leering
  • Unwanted gifts
  • Graffiti
  • Pictures, cartoons, drawings
  • Phone calls
  • Letters
  • Emails
  • Text messages
  • Social media
  • Other forms of technology