Sept. 30, 2013

Group misconduct website launches

The university has launched a website for transparent public communication of infractions by groups at Cornell – including student organizations, athletic teams, fraternities, sororities and university residences.

The Group Misconduct site, an expansion of hazing.cornell.edu, was created as part of a student- and alumni-driven response to President David Skorton’s challenge to “end pledging as we know it.” All hazing violations also will be posted on the group misconduct site.

“The group misconduct site, like the hazing page, will serve to inform those considering membership within a particular organization and provide groups the learning opportunity of examples in which group activities fail to meet community standards,” said Susan Murphy, vice president for student and academic services.

In the 2012-13 academic year, Cornell had more than 1,000 registered student organizations, 36 athletic teams and 64 Greek chapters.

The same year, 22 organizations – about 2 percent of the total – entered a judicial or review process for allegations of group misconduct infractions, and 17 of those were found responsible for the misconduct.

The new site is a resource for students considering joining a student organization or team, and anyone interested in gathering complete information about the nature of an organization. The group misconduct site will provide public disclosure and education about what constitutes group misconduct.

Descriptions of incidents engaged in by a group or team, and found to have violated the Campus Code of Conduct or other university or community policies, will be posted to the site along with outcomes of any judicial proceedings. Violations will be determined by the appropriate authority or governing body.