Sigma Alpha Mu is facing a three-year suspension from UR, effective immediately, due to hazing charges made in the spring.
According to the University’s press release last Thursday, SAM “will not be recognized by the University, and all membership rights at the University will be revoked until June 1, 2022.”
SAM’s housing will be open to general student residents in the coming semester.
The release said the fraternity did not dispute the charges, instead accepting a Responsible Option agreement, which allowed them to avoid a conduct hearing by accepting full responsibility for the charges.
While the release said that “University officials are confident that no one has been seriously harmed as a result of [the hazing] activity,” the offending actions were not specified.
“The types of activities described have been known to lead to harm and tragedy,” said Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs John DiSarro, when asked about the suspension’s length. “And our community cannot wait for harm to occur before taking serious action.”
There’s precedent for the suspension length as well. According to a 2013 Campus Times article, Psi Upsilon got a three year suspension due to a hazing violation in 2010.
According to DiSarro, the procedure in response to a hazing allegation is for Public Safety to interview the organization’s members. The Center for Student Conflict Management (CSCM) receives depositions from those interviews to decide whether policy was violated. If a violation is found, CSCM presents the formal charges to the fraternity or sorority.
“In this case, Sigma Alpha Mu reviewed all of the findings from the Public Safety investigation and accepted the length of the suspension by accepting the Responsible Option,” DiSarro said.
If an organization does not accept a Responsible Option agreement, it must participate in a conduct hearing, where an Administrative Conduct Board — typically chaired by someone from CSCM — reviews the charges.
DiSarro described SAM’s leadership as “responsive and engaged throughout the investigation.” SAM’s president did not respond to a request for interview or comment.
Editor’s Note (6/11/19): This article was amended to include the detail regarding SAM’s housing.