Sunday, May 5, 2013

Research Blog #6

Research blog #6 was supposed to be an interview with someone who worked at Rutgers, who could help us with our topic. I emailed Amy Vojta from the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affaris here at Rutgers University. I hoped she would eventually answer me in time for the semester to end, but she sadly still has not. I wanted to ask her why she thinks people haze, and if she thinks my argument is accurate. I argued that people haze as an identity builder encouraged by a group of people who all think the same way (Groupthink). I wanted her opinion on groupthink and the deterioration of the individual by getting hazed through these Greek organizations, or just belonging to one in general. Unfortunately, she never answered any of my 3 emails, but I like to think she would have agreed with me. Hazing is very frowned upon at this school, and any action that makes a new member uncomfortable is known as hazing. Keeping new members at a sorority or fraternity house past 11pm is hazing, even if they are just hanging out. The rules OFSA have made for Greek organizations are very strict at this school, as they should be, in attempt to end this viscous cycle of hazing. Administrators are getting fired left and right if they have ever even been known to approve of any sort of hazing. I believe hazing can tear a person down emotionally, physically and mentally, but also raise them up by giving them a false sense of confidence through accomplishing difficult, and often times dehumanizing tasks. I still wish she would have answered and I could have gotten her input, but I like to think she would have agreed with me, and that is why Rutgers University tries so hard to end the humiliating acts of hazing.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Research Blog #10

Link to final paper:

      Individualism is a trait one is supposed to learn over the years at an institution of higher education. However, there are organizations that deteriorate one’s chances at reaching this individualism. Those organizations are Greek fraternities and sororities, and the demise of the individual is brought on by hazing, which is triggered by the term “Groupthink”. Groupthink is the term used to explain a group cohesiveness where all of the members of a group share replicated opinions, morals and values. The lure of belonging to a group might sound appealing at first to prospective members, but once a new member begins “pledging” a sorority or fraternity, the loss of the individual is a constant process. Hazing is negative actions that are supposed to teach members the idea of groupthink, and unify all of the members of the organizations. However, it not only can emotionally, mentally and physically harm a person, but can also cause the ultimate demise of one’s individuality by conforming to the ideals of groupthink.


Works Cited

Hoover, Eric. "After a Death, a Question: Are Students Hard-Wired for Hazing?" Chronicle of

Higher Education 17 Feb. 2012, 58th ed., sec. 24: n. pag. Print.Nuwer, Hank. Wrongs of Passage: Fraternities, Sororities, Hazing, and Binge Drinking.

Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1999. Print.

Johnson, Jay. "Through the Liminal: A Comparative Analysis of Communitias and Rites of

Passage in Sport Hazing and Initiations." Canadian Journal or Sociology 36.3 (2011): 199-227. Web.

Keating, Caroline F., Jason Pomerantz, Stacy D. Pommer, Samantha J.H. Ritt, Lauren M. Miller,

and Julie McCormick. "Going to College and Unpacking Hazing: A Functional Approach to Decrypting Initiation Practices Among Undergraduates." Group Dynamics, Theory, Research, and Practice 9.2 (2005): 104-26. Web.

Nuwer, Hank. Wrongs of Passage: Fraternities, Sororities, Hazing, and Binge Drinking.

Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1999. Print.

Nuwer, Hank. The Hazing Reader. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2004. Print.

Robbins, Alexandra. Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororities. New York: Hyperion, 2004. Print.

Ruffins, Paul. "Hazing Refuses To Go Away." Diverse: Issues in Higher Education 29 Oct.

2009: n. pag. Print.

Sawyer, R. Keith. Group Genius: The Creative Power of Collaboration. New York: Basic, 2007.


Taylor, Kelley R. "Is Hazing Harmless Horseplay." Education Diguest 1 Oct. 2001: n. pag. Print.

Winslow, Donna. "Rites of Passage and Group Bonding in The Canadian Airborne." Armed

Forces and Society (1999): 429-57. ProQuest Social Science Journals. Web.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Extra Credit Blog

On April 10th, 2013, I attended the Undergraduate Research Writing Conference at the Livingston Student Center. I expected to sit through somewhat boring presentations on topics that did not interest me at all. However, I was pleasantly surprised. Each room had three presentations per session. One of the presentations I witnessed was a young lady who spoke about the overpopulation at Rutgers. I knew a lot of people went to this university, but while I sat and listened to her presentation, I realized, that it is a bigger problem than many students, including myself, even know. The issue of overpopulation not only makes traveling to class on the buses a struggle with how crowded they are, but more classes are being forced to be online, or become hybrid courses because there are not even room in the classrooms for the growing population. She pointed how that the idea of more and more classes becoming hybrid or online classes would upset a lot of students. Many people like sitting in the classroom and being taught by a professor, rather than students teaching themselves materials. I enjoy some of my classes being hybrid, but I am a science major and cannot imagine my chemistry and anatomy classes being online even just once a week. She expressed concern about how this idea of online classes might spread to more and more majors which would lessen the interest of students for that particular major. Also, online classes are hard for those who do not have self-discipline to make sure they complete all their assignments, and on time. Therefore, overpopulation might cause many of those students in online or hybrid classes to have their grades begin to slip. I believe her resolution was to build more lecture halls and to make admission harder. I agree with making admission harder because I personally know a lot of students who find Rutgers a very difficult school, who even have "easier" majors, and are not able to keep up the work load. I'm not saying everyone at this school should have a 4.0 GPA, but I feel as though there are a lot of students who come here just for the social atmosphere due to the fact it is a high ranked "party school". These are the students who may get into this school due to the fact their parents are alumnae, or because they went to an easier high school. Overall, my experience at the conference opened my eyes to ways that I can make my paper more interesting. In fact, it was that week that I re-did my entire research paper and tried to make it more appealing, and more convincing. My paper was very opinion based before I had rewritten it, and now I believe it is more interesting, and factual.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Literature Review Blog #5



Hoover, Eric. "After a Death, a Question: Are Students Hard-Wired for Hazing?"

            Editorial. Chronicle of Higher Education 17 Feb. 2012, Volume 58 ed.: n. pag. Web.

This article explains WHY people haze. It touches upon the fact that we as a society used to haze African Americans, and now it is being done in higher education organizations such as clubs or Greek life. It explains that hazing is a form of revenge, and people except it to be done to them. Psychologists have found that is all about the strive to carry on tradition, and the obligation a person feels to do so.

Eric Hoover is a senior writer for The Chronicle. He has written numerous stories on adult students, and the issues of the new millennium generations. He graduated from the University of Virginia, and has been recognized by Education Writers Association, among others, and his articles have also been published in the New York Times.

Spotlight parties: Pledges are blind folded and when it is removed, brothers shine bright lights in their eyes while yelling at them and asking them questions about the fraternities history.

Revenge: One taking the humiliation forced on them, and channeling that onto someone else

'The psyche of the perpetrators is that they believe they have the right and a duty to pass on the tradition,' Ms. Lipkins says." (Hoover 1). A member of an organization believes it is their responsibility to keep tradition alive, no matter how violent or inappropriate.

"They experience anger and humiliation when this is done to them, and then they get to complete the circle, they get back their self-esteem." (Hoover 1). They also haze as a form of revenge. They need to earn back some of their pride, and thus begins the viscous cycle.

"These groups are telling all of us, 'here's the way we do things, we've always done things this way, and we're going to continue doing them this way. Yeah, we beat people, we force people to drink themselves to death, we inherently see it as traditional and good, with a few losses here and there,'" Mr. Jones says. "Now the political question for presidents is, what are you going to do with that?" (Hoover 2). Hoover explains that the idea of hazing is not going to end because most people who commit these acts see it resulting in more positive results, than negative.

This article help me prove my point that people haze because of tradition and because of revenge. It proves my point that it is a vicious cycle that will continue for year to come.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Research Blog #9

My argument is that people haze for the reasons of revenge, and that is why it is still around today. It went from being a public issue, to an underground issue that has been highly privatized especially in universities. My counter issue is going to be that hazing is not done for revenge, but for a positive disciplinary action. Some argue that is a necessary right of passage. Kelly R. Taylor, a former NASSP General Counsel and writer at Principal Leadership magazine writes many articles on hazing. She believes hazing is "A prevalent and long-standing view is that hazing is a harmless rite of passage designed to help develop comradery and respect among teammates or other peer groups,” (Taylor 27). Most people think it is due purely out of the strive to continue tradition. However, I believe it is done in order to seek revenge for what was done to older members. I want to show the audience that hazing is not done with good intentions, but bad, negative ones that can lead to death and many other harms to a person.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Research Blog #9

Robert Champion

This is an image of Robert Champion. I mention him in my paper because he was hazed on a band bus which ultimately lead to his death. I want my readers to know how horrible hazing is, but mostly stress the reasons why that although it causes deaths, so many organizations still do it. I have a lot of example about fraternities and sororities hazing, but I also want to highlight hazing among other organizations in college as well, so I think this image and this story is definitely one I should use.

Research Blog #7

My case, as recently discussed in my meeting, is to explore the question of WHY people haze, in comparison to my present issue as to HOW people haze and that it is bad. I want to explore the psychological reasons behind hazing, and why it is still around today despite its negative images. In Hank Nuwer's books "Broken Pledges" and Wrongs of Passage: Fraternities, Sororities, Hazing and Binge Drinking, he gives a lot of these different viewpoints, and I plan on using these two sources a lot to help improve my case. He has written a lot of books on hazing, and they all supply the reader with a large amount of information on the affects of hazing. So far, none of my research has been able to compare to his two books I am using for my paper.