August 23, 2018

Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Recognition Revoked Following Hazing Allegations

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As a result of incidents related to hazing, the University revoked the recognition of the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity for at least two years on Thursday.

Kappa Alpha Psi, whose motto is “achievement in every field of human endeavor,” is a member of the Multicultural Greek Letter Council. The Cornell chapter was established in 1978, and the national fraternity was set up in 1911 with a desire to have a “particular emphasis on African American communities” in its service projects, according to the national Kappa Alpha Psi Foundation website.

The last alleged incident of hazing was reported in the spring 2017 semester. According to an investigation by the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Life, photos “showing humiliation, demeaning treatment, and intimidation” indicated an “endangerment of physical health and mental distress.” It is unclear if this is the hazing that led to the fraternity’s recognition being revoked on Thursday.

In one photo, “two members were laying on the ground atop a tarp, with food and liquid materials spread all over them while wearing only underwear” and in another photo, a new member’s pants were unzipped and his underwear was exposed.

Kappa Alpha Psi was placed on interim suspension in April 2017. The interim suspension was lifted on May 10, after which it was placed on a yearlong probationary period, according to a university statement. During this time, Kappa Alpha Psi was required to meet regularly with MGLC leadership and full revocation would be considered if the chapter did not adhere to University rules, The Sun previously reported.

In an attempt to combat hazing on campus, President Pollack issued a new set of reforms in May for Greek letter organizations in order to “elevate behavioral expectations” among members of Greek life.

After two years, the fraternity can request to be recognized again, and if approved, it will be on probationary status for at least another two years, according to the statement issued on Thursday by Joseph A. Burke, executive director of campus and community engagement.

The Kappa Alpha Psi chapter, Burke and assistant director, MGLC advisor and coordinator of inclusion programs Allie Brodeur have not yet responded to The Sun’s request for comment.