University of Maryland suspends fraternities and sororities pending investigation

The University of Maryland has ordered fraternities and sororities on campus to suspend social and recruitment activities after the school received multiple reports of unsafe activities.

A letter sent Friday from university officials to fraternity and sorority presidents informing them of the suspension did not describe the alleged misconduct as hazing but instead referred to "activities that have threatened the safety and well-being of members of the University community."

COLLEGE PARK, MD - JUNE 21: From left, Ava Kamali, 17, Hadley Sava 19, and her sister Anabel Sava, 17, eat at McKeldin Mall at the University of Maryland campus in College Park, Maryland on Sunday, June 21, 2020. Hadley Sava currently attends the Uni

The suspension applies to all organizations affiliated with the College Park campus’ Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Council, which represent 21 fraternities and 16 sororities, respectively.

The letter says the suspension will be in place indefinitely while an investigation takes place. Fraternities and sororities are barred from any contact with new or prospective members, and barred from hosting any events where alcohol is present, according to the letter.

Statement from the University of Maryland: 

Fraternity and Sorority Life is an important part of the academic and social experience at the University of Maryland. Our decision to suspend new member and alcohol-related activities was made after careful consideration of reports, observations and data-driven analysis of behaviors that we felt posed a threat to the safety and well-being of some members of our community. No single or specific incident led to this decision. Our decision was made to prevent such a significant incident.

Our investigation is a demonstrated commitment to prioritizing a safe and healthy campus environment. 

We plan to engage an external resource to assist with an investigation that moves as quickly as possible, and we aim to stay in close coordination with chapter and council presidents, as well as national organizations and Department of Fraternity and Sorority Life advisors. We are also actively identifying the best ways to communicate with fraternity and sorority alumni now and in the future.


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The action at Maryland comes just days after the University of Virginia suspended its Kappa Sigma chapter after an alleged hazing incident Feb. 21. In addition to the Kappa Sigma suspension, the university’s Interfraternity Council imposed a three-week suspension on all of its chapters "as a commitment to anti-hazing efforts and out of respect for the ongoing situation."

News outlets reported the Kappa Sigma chapter at Virginia was suspended after a pledge who had been drinking heavily fell down a staircase and hit his head, leading to his hospitalization.

In Virginia, the 2021 death of a Virginia Commonwealth University student, Adam Oakes, after a fraternity hazing incident resulted in passage of anti-hazing legislation and a nearly $1 million settlement payment from the university to Oakes’ family.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.