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Students to Discuss Anti-Hazing Education During One-Day Program

PLATTSBURGH, NY __ Campuses across the nation are struggling with an increase in severe hazing incidents. Combating current views about hazing requires proactive programming and fundamental changes in student traditions.

Students and administrators at the State University of New York College at Plattsburgh are one of only three campuses in the nation piloting a program designed to help students better understand how to recognize and prevent hazing on campus.

The Campus Anti-Hazing Program (CAP) is a student workshop, an anti-hazing seminar and a goal-setting think tank all wrapped into one day on Saturday, April 9, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Angell College Center. Students and administrators from the campus have been invited to participate in the program.

The program's purpose is to increase understanding of the issues, create an open dialogue among all students, provide resources and create a starting point for campus community members to work together within their organization as well as the larger campus community to stop hazing.

Participants will leave the program with a better understanding of the definition of hazing, why students choose to haze, legal ramifications, alternatives to hazing and a course of action to combat the problem on campus.

"We know hazing is occurring on our campus, and we are excited to have a program to help us challenge the problem and begin to rid hazing from SUNY Plattsburgh, " said Chris Ashley, a senior from Dekalb, N.Y. and president of the Interfraternity Council. "We hope this program will be the start to a new spirit of valuing more positive traditions among the members of all student organizations."

The students participating in the program will also work to compile a list of cooperative task force items for addressing hazing issues that affect the campus community. The Vice President for Student Affairs' Standing Committee on Hazing, a committee made up of students and administrators, will continue the work of combating the problem and carrying out the action plan. Students will be charged to make a commitment to work together to promote a positive anti-hazing environment for all students on campus.

"This is an incredible opportunity for us to come together to fight hazing on our campus and learn to work together to demonstrate the values we all share, " said Allison Swick-Duttine, coordinator of Greek Affairs and Leadership Development at SUNY Plattsburgh. "There are so many things that make clubs and organizations, fraternities and sororities, athletic teams and other student groups different, but there are also many values these organizations share. We are going to emphasize the things we have in common and work together to promote a spirit of community to all students looking to join campus organizations."

Swick-Duttine is the CAP coordinator for SUNY Plattsburgh on behalf of the Standing Committee on Hazing. She also helped develop the CAP curriculum on a national committee, which was coordinated through CAMPUSPEAK, Inc., a Colorado-based collegiate speakers agency.

Professional facilitators will travel from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y., and North Carolina State University to lead this workshop.

For more information on the Campus Anti-Hazing Program, please contact Allison Swick-Duttine at 518-564-4825.

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