[UPDATED] Cultural sorority shut down for hazing

[UPDATED] Cultural sorority shut down for hazing
Photo by Lauren Scornavacca

Updated Nov. 30.

By Alejandro Serrano, news staff

Following an investigation for hazing, the Northeastern University chapter of the alpha Kappa Delta Phi sorority must immediately cease all activities and operations, a sorority official said Wednesday morning. Individual sorority members will retain their membership, but are prohibited from functioning on behalf of the sorority in any matter.

The national board of the multicultural sorority voted Monday to close its chapter at Northeastern University because of the chapter’s hazing practices, James Gaffney, the executive director of the international Asian-interest sorority, said in an email to The News Tuesday.

“This decision was reached following a joint investigation that uncovered numerous acts of hazing during the new member education process,” Gaffney said in the email.

Gaffney said the chapter’s actions “were not sanctioned by the sorority’s leadership and are in direct violation of our risk management policy, as well as the standards of acceptable behavior that we expect our members to meet.”

In an email Wednesday morning, Gaffney said he could not comment on details of the case.

Northeastern’s chapter of alpha Kappa Delta Phi was shut down Tuesday.

Following an investigation, Northeastern’s Student Conduct Board suspended the sorority earlier this month, according to a university statement. In the Nov. 13 email to The News, a university spokesperson said the sorority was amid an appeal process about the decision. The sorority was ordered to suspend all activities during the process.

“Northeastern is committed to fostering a safe environment free of all forms of harassment, and the safety of our students is our top priority,” the university’s email statement read.

Following a tip, The News had been investigating the suspension of the sorority for the last three weeks. The News emailed six members of the sorority multiple times each and messaged the sorority via Facebook. No inquiries were answered.

Gaffney said the national board was aware of the allegations prior to The News’ inquiries, which started on Nov. 6.

Ethan Lam, the Multicultural Greek Council’s current student president, did not respond to a request for comment by late Wednesday. Earlier this month, Lam said the council had no comment because the appeal process was still active and the situation was not yet definite.

The sorority’s Facebook page was taken down by Tuesday evening. Before then, the last post was from the first week of October, according to regular checks by The News. The organization’s Instagram account was still active as of Wednesday night.

The Northeastern chapter of the sorority was founded in 2015, according to a Facebook post by the international sorority Nov. 22 of that year.

“We would like to officially welcome our 51st chapter at Northeastern University,” the post read. “We cannot be prouder of these 16 sisters and am so happy that you are now apart of this eternal sisterhood.”

Gaffney, the national sorority executive director, said in the statement that he hopes to reopen the alpha Kappa Delta Phi chapter at the university.

“We thank the administration of Northeastern University for responding to this situation in a fair and timely manner,” his statement read. “We look forward to working with them to return to Northeastern in the future.”

Correction: The caption on the picture of the Greek letters was corrected Nov. 29 at 10:30 a.m. to say “alpha Kappa Delta Phi.”  

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