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Student Activities distributes first hazing survey in seven years

January 31, 2020

A new hazing prevention survey was emailed to students on Sunday in order to gather data on campus hazing practices and improve the College’s prevention efforts. The last survey of this kind was conducted seven years ago.

Director of Student Activities Nate Hintze explained that the information collected will help ensure safe extracurricular activities.

“If there is something happening that we as administrators don’t see, and if students think hazing is happening in a fair amount, then this will help us go back as a division [to think] about how we’re educating our students,” said Hintze. “I don’t think that’s the narrative, but it will be helpful if students fill out the survey and provide us with this large volume of data.”

Hintze emphasized that the survey is strictly anonymous and meant to be informative rather than punitive.

“The data all comes back in an aggregate form. We’re not using this as an investigative tool; we’re not using this to open up inquiries onto clubs or athletes,” said Hintze. “It’s a [way] for us to get some sort of baseline data to help us continue to improve what we’re currently doing.”

The survey is based on the version used by the National Hazing Prevention Consortium, a group that inspired Bowdoin’s implementation of an anonymous hazing form last fall. The group’s director, Elizabeth Allan, will visit campus later this semester to meet with Student Activities staff to discuss anti-hazing measures.

Hintze noted that student life has continued to change in the seven years since the last survey was sent out, and it was important for the College to keep this in mind when preparing the new survey.

“We continue to assess our training and not assume that what we did once will always work because time changes and people change,” said Hintze. “It’s valuable to have somebody coming from the outside to help us rethink what we’re doing and make sure that we are still doing the best that can be done.”

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