FAMU Notes 'Sweeping Changes' to Battle Hazing [FULL REPORT ATTACHED]

FAMU Hazing Champion Parents Offered 300,000
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Tallahassee, FL - FAMU student Armeshia Johnson says, "FAMU's a great school, always has been."

However, there are some things that the Florida Board of Governors' Inspector General says the school should do better.

The I.G. issued a report late last year that said FAMU officials failed to follow state regulations regarding hazing.

FAMU has submitted a 27-page response. In it, it says: "The University adopted an anti-hazing program, including a nonretaliation component and a requirement for more timely reporting of suspected hazing incidents."

FAMU Student DiMarcus Jones says, "I think every institution should take that route. it's ensuring their students are safe and protected."

FAMU says, "The University has begun a vigorous ongoing education process to inform all students, faculty, and staff of policies governing hazing.

That has included town hall meetings, meetings with student organizations, and presentations at student orientations.

Johnson says, "You can sign all the anti-hazing forms, have all the meetings, but you can't control what someone's going to do when they want to do it. With hazing, you can't blame the faculty and the president for something a student did."

In the wake of drum major Robert Champion's 2011 hazing death, the university is also changing enrollment and academic requirements for the Marching 100.

Administrators pointed out that they've hired someone for the new position of Anti-Hazing Special Assistant to the President as one of the many measures that FAMU has taken to address hazing.

FAMU Student Masani Bailey says, "Hazing is something that one person can't really control by themselves. So for one single person to be getting paid $90,000 to do something that really can't be done in my eyes. I think it's kind of stupid."

The report says the special assistant will help establish a database to track hazing complaints and student suspensions.

FAMU Student Kenya Strickland says, "I don't feel it's so much that FAMU failed to keep their students safe, as much as FAMU students failed to keep themselves safe. At the end of the day, hazing is something that you choose to do."

Administrators say they will also develop policy or procedures and a tracking system to prevent delays in reporting hazing.

FAMU Student Kamaria Kafele says, "It's going to be very tough to keep under control, I think. But, I think it's a good step."

Associated Press Release

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida A&M University officials say in a new report that they're making sweeping changes to battle hazing at the school.

FAMU on Wednesday submitted a 27-page response to a blistering report issued late last year that concluded that university officials failed to follow state regulations regarding hazing.

The school's response spells out all the changes, including altering requirements for its famed Marching 100 band and adopting a major anti-hazing plan.

The university also disputed a few facts in the report, contending that its student judicial office did act on hazing cases it received from police.

The Florida Board of Governors -- which oversees the state university system -- ordered the report following the hazing death of FAMU band drum major Robert Champion 13 months ago

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