Published: September 19, 2016

Information On Hazing

Membership in Theta Chi Fraternity requires us to uphold and live by the ideals and principles of Theta Chi as described in the Fraternity’s Ritual, Creed, The Constitution and Bylaws of Theta Chi Fraternity, Inc., and The Risk Management Standards and Insurance Manual of Theta Chi Fraternity, Inc.

Theta Chi Fraternity will not tolerate any hazing-related activity which demeans, embarrasses, threatens, frightens, implies one member is superior to another or that initiation must be earned through personal services or meaningless activities for initiated members.

It takes courage to take a stand against hazing and provide alternatives to years of what some in the chapter may consider 'tradition'. To help, we offer some quick questions to ask about some of the activities that may be proposed for your new member education process:

What is hazing?

Hazing is any action taken or situation created intentionally:

  • that causes embarrassment, harassment or ridicule
  • risks emotional and/or physical harm
  • to members of an group or team
  • whether new or not
  • regardless of the person's willingness to participate

Still confused? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Would I feel comfortable participating in this activity if my parents were watching?
  • Would we get in trouble if the Dean of Students walked by?
  • Would we do this activity during the Field Executive's visit?
  • Am I being asked to keep these activities a secret?
  • Am I doing anything illegal?
  • Does participation violate my values or those of my organization?
  • Is it causing emotional distress or stress of any kind to myself or others?
  • If someone were injured, would I feel comfortable being investigated by the insurance carrier?
  • When I apply for jobs, can I take the onus of having a criminal arrest on my record?
  • Would I want this activity featured on the front page of The New York Times or other media?

From The Constitution and Bylaws of Theta Chi Fraternity, Inc.:

Article V, Section 11
The Fraternity prohibits absolutely all physical hazing, paddling, uncalled-for humiliation, and public display in connection with New Member education and pre-initiatory activities, and subscribes to the North-American Interfraternity Conference resolutions and the Fraternity Executives Association’s “Statement of Position on Hazing and Pre-Initiatory Activities" which condemn all forms of hazing in connection with New Member education and pre-initiatory activities. The active chapters shall carry out the Fraternity’s policy and conform strictly to this policy, not only to escape the danger of bringing discredit to the Fraternity and injuring the entire fraternity cause, but also to build higher respect for the chapters and the Fraternity in the minds of New Members and to instill a finer type of loyalty thereby. The Fraternity prohibits all forms of public initiation, and pre-initiatory and initiation activities shall not be permitted to interfere in any way with the scholastic obligations or class attendance of those involved.

Prohibited Hazing Activities

The following activities are hazing and will not be tolerated. This list is by no means all-inclusive; many other activities could be added. Keep in mind that the intent of the activity is as significant as the activity itself.

  • Forced or coerced consumption of alcohol or food.
  • Calisthenics of any type, or at any time.
  • Paddling, striking or any form of physical abuse.
  • Any type of abandonment (e.g., kidnaps, "ditches," or "bags").
  • "Road trips" or any transportation with no educational experience.
  • Any form of "line-ups" or interviews.
  • Prevention or deprivation of sleep or study time.
  • Duties not shared equally with members (e.g., house clean ups, answering telephones, giving rides, or serving meals).
  • Requiring new members to carry items or objects (e.g., paddles, matches, books, change, bricks, or the Manual of Theta Chi).
  • Any act of personal servitude.
  • Verbal harassment or yelling at any time.
  • Requiring or endorsing pranks that break the law or reflect poorly on the chapter (e.g., theft, destruction, or harassment).
  • Requiring uncomfortable, inappropriate dress or conforming dress.
  • Restricting or requiring the use of certain doors, entrances, or public rooms or furniture in the chapter house.
  • Interrogations and testing that is inconsistent with normal testing of educational material (e.g., threatening or harassing new members through psychological or verbal intimidation including the use of pledge courts or pledge reviews). 
  • Requiring certain forms of address or greetings to members when answering the telephone.
  • Requiring new members to recite the Creed or Greek Alphabet "to a match" or in any other manner that is designed to denigrate or intimidate the new members.
  • Misleading new members to believe that they are brothers or "active."
  • Use of blindfolds.
  • Requiring new members to recite information, phrases or spiels with no useful or educational purpose.
  • Keeping vigil over any object or device.

Still have questions? Contact the International Headquarters at 317-848-1856 or