Nottingham Trent University students have been issued with strict guidelines following the death of a Newcastle student in a booze-fuelled initiation ceremony.
Initiations or “hazing” is a rite of passage marking entrance or acceptance into a group or society, over time, university culture has meant that these initiations often involve excessive amount of alcohol consumption and forcing ‘freshers to do things beyond their control.
In the Newcastle tragedy, the student had five times the legal limit in his blood following the agricultural initiation ceremony.
Olly Judd, Vice President of Sports at Nottingham Trent University, led a sports council session for all committee members as a result of the Newcastle student’s death.
He reminded them of the repercussions that would be taken if societies were found to be practising initiations.
“they MIGHT THINK IT’S ALL FUN AND GAMES”
Olly Judd, Vp of sport
“We covered everything from Varsity to Social Wednesdays at Ocean and have set some strict guidelines for socials”
Due to alcohol induced behaviour, the Trent Rugby society are already banned from Ocean for the whole of first term with risk of the team folding.
Ocean nightclub is where all societies go on a Wednesday night as part of their social events.
Olly added, “If any incidents get flagged up then the people responsible will get an automatic ban and then have to sit with the student code of behaviour board in front of a big panel and student union representatives where they are interviewed and questioned.”
“We also spoke about how parents would be contacted even though they might think it’s all fun and games.”
Colin Hall, a former member of the football society at Manchester Metropolitan University, told us about his initiation experience over 20 years ago.
“Initiations have always been around but I think they’ve gotten a lot worse over the years, we would have fathers and sons where an older footballer would pick us and we’d stay with them all night and do what they told us too, whether it be downing drinks or walking around on all fours until they told us to get up.”
Despite the best efforts of Trent and Universities across the country, there is only so much warning and precautions that can be given, the ultimate responsibility relies with the students.