After Student Hospitalized, Duke Gets Tough on Sororities

All sorority activity was initially suspended
By Luke Roney,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 28, 2016 12:15 AM CST
After Student Hospitalized, Duke Gets Tough on Sororities
A Duke University student is seen walking in Durham, NC, in this file photo.   (Bernard Thomas/The Herald-Sun via AP)

An "alcohol-related incident" Tuesday night left a Duke University student hospitalized in critical condition, prompting the school to clamp down on more than half the sorority chapters on the campus, USA Today College reports. The unnamed student, described only as a "new member," is expected to fully recover, according to a Wednesday afternoon statement from Larry Moneta, VP for student affairs. He said the university "has suspended all sorority activity … due to concerns about activities that have taken place during the most recent rush and bid periods." The school has 18 sororities, and the ban applied to its 10 National Panhellenic Conference chapters. But that ban was eased following a Wednesday night meeting between sorority chapter presidents and school officials, reports the Chronicle, Duke's student newspaper.

That means sororities can hold alcohol-free events, per the Chronicle, and social events will begin again on Monday. Events may include study breaks, sisterhood events, meetings, and service activities, Moneta said in a second statement. Duke's director of fraternity and sorority life and the president of the Pan-Hellenic Council sent an email asking students to "utilize this time to reflect and keep in mind the severity of this incident. We must maintain our sense of urgency to change the campus culture." In the later statement, Moneta writes that the sororities are "committed to focusing on lasting reforms" and will seek "actionable proposals for the immediate future." Any remaining sanctions on sorority activities are "expected to be lifted in the near future," he writes. (Read more Duke University stories.)

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