MacMillan, one of Bowdoin’s eight College Houses, was placed on House probation for violation of the hard alcohol policy last Friday following the transport of a first-year student who attended a party at the House the weekend before. Although there were initial conversations regarding a possible violation of the hazing policy, the Office of Residential Life (ResLife) ultimately determined that it would not investigate the incident further. This is the first College House that has been put on probation during this academic year. 

The first-year student who was transported was accepted as a MacMillan resident for the 2015-2016 academic year; the party was a welcoming event for new members.

MacMillan House has been placed on House probation for the remainder of the semester.

“Social probation, I guess, is just for individuals,” said House resident Liam Finnerty ’17. “[Director of Residential Life Meadow Davis] explained that House probation means they’re not going to look to investigate further into individuals, just the group... I think they understand it was more of a misunderstanding than anything with mal-intent, the whole event.”

While on House probation, MacMillan will not be permitted to register any events with alcohol. Davis met with House officers last Friday to discuss the event they held and what the repercussions would be. 

“We also discussed our concerns regarding the event they held for new members, including potential violations of Bowdoin’s hazing policy,” wrote Davis in an email to the Orient. “Following these discussions, we decided that the actions of these students did not warrant further investigation for hazing but certainly did violate our alcohol policy, and it is for this that the House is on probation for the remainder of the academic year.”

Last year, the 2013-2014 house residents prepared a scavenger hunt to welcome this year’s House residents. This year, the 2014-2015 residents attempted to do the same. 

“What we were trying to do is the same thing we had a lot of fun at last year, and it ended up going not so well,” said Finnerty.

According to MacMillan President Patrick Toomey ’17, hard alcohol was provided at the event.

“One of our traditions involved hard alcohol, which was obviously against college policy, but we were very conscientious and did our best to try to be very safe about it,” said Toomey. “We made it clear that nobody had to drink at all; they didn’t have to drink beer, and they didn’t have to drink hard alcohol… We thought the people felt pretty comfortable and pretty safe.”

Finnerty said that he didn’t realize that the House was in danger of violating the hazing policy during their welcoming event and scavenger hunt.

“I kind of brushed through [the hazing policy] and was like check, check, check. In my mind [I have] the examples of hazing and I was like, we’re nowhere near that; we’re totally fine,” he said. 

According to Finnerty, Davis is interested in clarify the hazing policy for House residents in the future. 

“She wanted us to understand what we’d done and she asked us how they could convey to the Houses of next year what necessarily breaks the hazing policy and doesn’t,” he said. 

Finnerty said that the House cooperated fully with ResLife.  

“The whole investigation, Meadow asked for information and we gave it as soon as she asked for it,” he said. “We tried to be entirely honest and open with everything, and I think they felt that we were being honest and understanding, that we had no ill feelings towards new Mac. We were trying to make it fun, we weren’t trying to make it scary for them or anything like that.”

—Rachael Allen and Nickie Mitch contributed to this report.