Hazing is very serious and is taken very seriously on campus. Many hazing incidents could be avoided if members were better educated about what constitutes hazing, alternatives to hazing and the university hazing policy. Though it is the responsibility of each member of an organization to uphold the Hazing Policy it is your responsibility as a student of this university to be educated, lead by example, and report any hazing that has occurred. Groups can lose their recognition and individuals can be judicially sanctioned for allowing/ignoring or taking part in any form of hazing.

JMU is an institution of higher learning devoted to excellence in teaching, research and service to the people of the commonwealth and the nation. The university is committed to developing students through academic and co-curricular activities. Hazing is an unproductive and hazardous custom that is incongruous with this responsibility and has no place in college life, either on or off campus. No individual student or recognized student organization may engage in or plan any activity that may be defined as hazing. In addition, no individual nor recognized organization may by physical or mental stress or by subtle or covert technique, impair, make captive, or destroy an individuals’ freedom of thought and choice. It is expected that all organizations will review in depth policy with all officers, members and potential members. All parties will be held to this policy.


The university prohibits any situation created intentionally to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment or ridicule in connection with or the purpose of initiation, admission into, or affiliation with or as a condition for continued membership in a club, organization, or association, regardless of whether the students participated voluntarily in the relevant activity. Students directing, engaging in, aiding, or participating in, actively or passively, the forcing, compelling, requiring, encouraging, expecting, whether direct or implied, of individuals to participate in hazing activities shall be considered in violation of this policy.

It is impossible to anticipate every situation that could involve hazing. Behavior listed below does not, and cannot encompass every circumstance that can be categorized as hazing. Further, this policy is not intended to prohibit customary athletic events, contests, and competitions that are sponsored by the institution or the organized and supervised practices associated with such events or activity or conduct that furthers the goals of a legitimate educational curriculum, extracurricular program, or military training program as approved by the University.J17-101 Section 18.2-56 of the Code of Virginia, as amended, which declares hazing illegal, establishes conditions for civil and criminal liability and outlines the duties of the university when a student has been found guilty of hazing. It is hereby incorporated as part of this policy and will serve as a guide for action by the university when hazing results in bodily injury.


The following activities have at one time or another been construed as hazing. Such actions are often required or implied as conditions necessary for an individual to be included in a group. The list is not inclusive of all possible hazing violations at the university. Organizations that are found to be in violation of this policy are subject to discipline by the university and may lose their status as recognized student organizations of the university. Individual members/interest(s) that are found to be in violation of the Code of Student Conduct may be disciplined in accordance with established university procedures.

Hazing may include but is not limited to the following activities:

  • Physical abuse
  • Kidnapping
  • Blindfolding
  • Confinemen
  • Binding and/or restricting movement
  • Calisthenics or other strenuous physical activity used to harass, punish, or harm an individual
  • Excursions
  • Spraying
  • Painting or pelting with any substance
  • Burying in any substance
  • Nudity
  • Servitude
  • Exposure to uncomfortable elements
  • Verbal abuse or harassment
  • Wearing of apparel which is conspicuous or indecent
  • Forcing consumption of any legal or illegal substance (e.g. Food, liquid, beverage, alcohol, drug, or other substance)
  • Depriving of sufficient sleep
  • Burning, branding, or tattooing
  • Interrogation in an intimidating or threatening manner
  • Misleading members in an effort to convince them that they will not become or remain members unless they complete tasks, follow instructions, or act in a certain way
  • Misleading members into believing that they will be hurt during induction or initiation
  • Carrying items that serve no constructive purpose or that are designed to punish or embarrass the carrier
  • Requiring or suggesting obtaining, possessing items or completing tasks in an unlawful manner (i.e. Scavenger hunts)
  • Any act that is designed to or likely to compromise the dignity of a member or prospective member
  • Cause embarrassment or shame to a member or prospective member
  • Cause a member or prospective member to be the object of malicious amusement
  • Ridicule
  • Emotional strain, or cause psychological harm or substantial emotional strain
  • Any other activity which may result in physical injury or endanger the health or life of the individual being hazed

An individual cannot consent to being hazed- a victim’s voluntary or willful participation in hazing activities will not be considered evidence that a violation of this policy did not occur.

Any chapter found in violation of JMU Hazing Policy will be brought under review by CMSS.

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