The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) defines hazing as “...any humiliating or dangerous activity expected of a student to belong to a group, regardless of their willingness to participate.”
According to a recent study, 1.5 million high school students experience hazing each year. Two in every five students are cognizant of hazing on their campus, and one in five actually witness acts of hazing. These numbers are too high.
Many argue that acts of hazing are tradition or rites of passage that everyone goes through at some point in his or her life. In reality, these acts are emotionally and sometimes physically debilitating. They can ruin friendships, destroy self-esteem and eliminate self-confidence. Students should be allowed to participate in sports and other organizations based on their talent and dedication, not their willingness to engage in humiliating and pointless exercises.
September 23 – 27, 2013 is National Hazing Prevention Week. We encourage all member-school student-athletes, coaches, faculty and administrators to rid their campuses of hazing completely to create a productive learning environment in class and outside of school on the field or court.
For more information about hazing or to learn tips on how you can prevent hazing at your school, visit www.HazingPrevention.org.