TAMPA, Fla. -- The issue of hazing is taking center stage this week at the University of South Florida in Tampa.
National Hazing Prevention Week officially falls in September, but was postponed due to Hurricane Irma and is being recognized now.
Monday night, students gathered for a frank and honest discussion at the Marshall Student Center. While hazing is often associated with Greek life, panelists made it clear the problem can easily stretch into many other organizations including athletics, the band, and clubs.
Students say hazing often comes down to wanting to fit in, to be part of the club or people being afraid to question tradition.
The good news for USF is that as a relatively new institution a lot of the hazing tradition other campuses deal with hasn’t had time to take hold here.
University administrators also say they are proactive on providing education and guidance to both students and staff on what to look out for and what’s acceptable and what’s not.