• Rich Barlow

    Senior Writer

    Photo: Headshot of Rich Barlow, an older white man with dark grey hair and wearing a grey shirt and grey-blue blazer, smiles and poses in front of a dark grey backdrop.

    Rich Barlow is a senior writer at BU Today and Bostonia magazine. Perhaps the only native of Trenton, N.J., who will volunteer his birthplace without police interrogation, he graduated from Dartmouth College, spent 20 years as a small-town newspaper reporter, and is a former Boston Globe religion columnist, book reviewer, and occasional op-ed contributor. Profile

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There are 51 comments on Alleged Sorority Hazing Investigated by University, Police

  1. I’ve never agreed with Greek Life. It’s literally just an excuse to have unofficially condoned parties (because obviously the school knows that having parties and a place to drink is basically the whole point of it) that you get rewarded for later in life by the networking opportunities. I’m friendly with many people within the greek systems and they’re all friendly, sweet people, but I don’t support their bakesales and stuff in the GSU because my money can go to good causes without condoning Greek life.

    1. What a silly thing to say. If you’ve never been a part of Greek Life, of course you can’t understand it. It’s so much more than having a place to drink, and frankly that is extremely insulting to Greeks on campus. The Greeks raise far more money for their respective philanthropies than any other student groups on campus. Greeks are visible on campus as student leaders, and they do deserve their future networking advantages because they work hard to maintain a good image. It’s unfortunate that one group got out of hand, but it’s not a reason to insult all Greeks.

      1. Insulting, yes. True, also yes. They raise money because they have to raise money. I’m part of Greek life at BU and I can honestly tell you 95% of us just join to make friends and have a place to party. Also no one views us as student leaders. Our letters just make girls ask us when the next party is. And we’ll happily oblige.

      2. i agree with you. people shouldn’t just stereotype greek life because they’ve never been a part of it. ignorance isn’t flattering on anyone. and the point of greek life is not parties or a place to drink, and acting like no one else parties on campus is a bit pretentious. thank you for pointing out some of the less talked about truths of greek life.

        1. This comment brightened my day haha. Listen, if these Greek students want to be seen like leaders, they could set way better examples than they currently are. I watched a few sorority girls helping Girl Scouts sell cookies, and these college girls hardly acknowledged the poor elementary school kids. I don’t think much of the sorority or fraternity leaders because frankly, they tend to act like pretentious jerks who are more popular than you are because of the letters on their chest/bag. And I don’t think much of that.

          1. That’s just incredibly unfair. I think it’s wonderful that one of the chapters worked with the Girl Scouts. I even heard one of the girls talking about how she wants to be in a sorority when she’s in college. This is a young, elementary school age child! Clearly she doesn’t want it for the “partying” she wants it because of the amazing example those girls set, and the little girl clearly saw the strength of their bond! And furthermore, I’m not saying that all Greeks are leaders, I am saying that many of the student leaders on campus like FYSOP leaders and coordinators, Student Advisors, Student Ambassadors, etc. are in Greek life!

    2. i agree too. i’m in a sorority and i like raising money for charity obviously cause its a good thing to do but honestly we wouldn’t if we didn’t have to. i joined because its hard to make friends in such a big school and i wanted a community and yes a place to party. no one views us as student leaders. just as partiers. i love greek life and i have a lot more fun than i would if i wasn’t in it but its def not for everyone but i mean what he/she said is true.

      1. I agree that the primary reasons I joined a sorority were regarded things like wanting a niche on campus and wanting to feel pride in something. It’s difficult to feel pride in BU sometimes. There’s really no school spirit or campus, and in light of the recent events with sexual assault and peeping, it’s easy to lose that pride in our school. But I’m proud to be Greek every day, and very proud of my chapter. This was an unfortunate incident that occurred within another chapter, but that whole chapter should not have to suffer, and all of Greek life should not be dragged down as a result. I would hate BU without Greek life. I’ve waited my whole life to feel pride in something the way I do in my sorority.

    3. Let me emphasize that I don’t have an issue with the people in Greek life, but the fact that it is still institutionalized within university systems.

    1. That’s the risk you take when you’re affiliated with an organization. We just saw it happen with BU athletics….one bad apple spoils the bunch.

  2. Omg stop being stupid and making my school look bad. I’m tired of having hour and a half conversations with my mom concerning the behavior of other students.

    1. Things like this happen at literally every university. It sounds like your mother’s a little overbearing. You’re in college, she should get over it.

  3. I’m surprised that it’s been 10 years since something like this has surfaced…it’s not like we don’t hear about it every year, especially during pledging.

    and why is it a surprise that the entire group is “being so harshly blamed for the actions of a few members”? isn’t the point of a sorority/fraternity to be apart of some group? if a few members decide it’s a good idea to encourage people to drink and drink and drink, isn’t that something that everyone else in the group would probably encourage, too? I feel like it’s mob mentality…

    the other day someone told me that I should “join a sorority! that’s where it’s at!” LOL funniest joke of my life. I can make friends outside of a contrived gaggle of biddies and bros. There are only 16,000+ people wandering around.

    1. Its definitely not a group mentality. In any organization you are bound to have a few bad eggs. You can look at your own circle of friends and should find that at least one of them is a jacka**. It’s not that hard to turn down a drink. That’s a problem with the individual not the group.

      Also, the fraternity in question that did this to the girls is off campus for a reason. The Greeks that keep out of trouble should not be punished for the actions of a fraternity that is known to be scum.

        1. that is CLEARLY not what she is saying!!! But the fraternity in question has been a hot button issue for quite some time. All of Panhel and IFC have been warned about interacting with them and the consequences of having events with them. If a group chooses not to listen, that is their responsibility. She’s not blaming the fraternity in question, she’s merely commenting on the fact that people have been warned not to engage in these sorts of activities with them, especially because they are off campus and are thus not held to the same standards as the rule-abiding Greeks.

    2. don’t you dare call me a biddie. i am unbelievably offended by this comment. i am a member of greek life, and i’d like to emphasize that my sorority not once hazed me or my class during the new member period. we were welcomed with open arms. and while i did gain wonderful new friends through the process, i have plenty of friends outside the sorority and had them beforehand. also, what’s so wrong about meeting people through greek life? it’s no different than meeting people through other student organizations or clubs.

      we are not biddies, and partying isn’t the purpose of a sorority (also, i think it’s safe to say that many students outside of fraternities and sororities party, so calling members of Greek life derisive names because of a stereotype is rather uncalled for). the purposes of a sorority are sisterhood, philanthropy, and helping each other. and while sometimes yes, we do get together and have fun, it’s no different than other students going out at bu.

        1. yeah totally. that’s what greek life is… paying for your friends. WRONG. Did it ever occur to you that being a part of Greek life means being a part of something so much bigger than yourself? Also, newsflash, Greeks aren’t the only orgs paying dues! PRSSA has dues! No one criticizes that!

        2. I don’t pay for my friends. As I said originally, I have plenty of friends outside Greek life beforehand, so it wasn’t an issue of needing friends. And fyi, the dues are for membership/recognition in the national organization and for funding for activities.

        1. If you’re not a Greek, you don’t know the realities. This happened to ONE chapter in ten years. I’d say that’s a pretty GOOD record! The other 8 sororities maintain positive images and do not haze their members

          1. it’s hilarious that you’re trying to say that hazing has happened one single time in the past ten years. It’s only been brought to attention once, sweetheart.

    3. I was never a member of Greek life when I was at BU and had plenty of friends who were part of it.

      Some people have difficulty making friends on such a large campus. Even you should know that it’s tough, and people can be harsh. A fraternity/sorority can be a welcome family of brothers and sisters to someone who sees Greek Life as a chance to develop friendships, and yes, party.

      But if you knew anything about Greek Life at BU, all chapters have involvement with the community through service or fundraising.

      Using stereotypes and calling people you don’t even know “a contrived gaggle of biddies and bros” shows how ignorant you are when it comes to talking maturely about this subject.

      Yeah, there are bound to be a handful of people who will put a stain on a group of people, but take the time to actually learn more about Greek Life before making statements like that.

      I bet if you found a group of people who have the same interest as you, you are always open to broaden your network and add new friends. That’s the same concept of this person asking you to join a sorority.

  4. Justin, lol u made my day! I’m not the only helicopter mom out there. You’re right this is crazy…there are better things to talk about. I will try to keep it o 10 min with my daughter on this one. :)

  5. Seriously, undisclosed fraternity? We all know which fraternity this article is referring to, and the fact that it is even being referred to as a fraternity when it is not even recognized by BU anymore makes the situation even worse. Why are they still present and why are still causing issues?

    1. they are still recognized because their National office has not revoked their charter. BU has decided it will not acknowledge their presence as a BU affiliated organization, but they are still a registered chapter with their nationals. And not all of these guys are the causes of the issues. Neither are all of the girls in SDT. All of the generalizations here are just harsh. Honestly, if you don’t understand how Greek life works, maybe you should refrain from bashing it.

  6. This is clearly getting blown out of proportion. Greek life is not just a place to party, I am not saying there aren’t parties, of course there are, but every club and team sport does the same thing. It people who know they have to same interests getting together, while having fun. Whether that means partying or raising money for philanthropies, or meeting your best friends. People who spend their money on greek life are free to do so its their own decision. BU needs to stop thinking we are above or better than greek life, because thats jsut being pretentious. If people don’t like it, then stay away and keep your mouth shut. There are plenty of clubs that have no meaning, and people don’t make a big deal about it. Greek life does nothing to anyone, so no one should care

      1. Irresponsibility sends students to the hospital every weekend, not Greek life. You can’t say that fraternities and sororities are the cause of drinking and subsequent ambulance trips. Last time I checked, most students do their partying at non-Greek functions. They’re not the cause of kids who can’t swipe in after a night out and have to be sent to the hospital.

      2. that’s such a stupid thing to say. at the beginning of every school year, there are always freshmen girls getting sent to the hospital, and none of them could possibly be Greek at that point! Greek life doesn’t send people to the hospital. It’s an important thing to understand limits, and alcohol intake limit is no exception. Plenty of non-Greeks have bad nights too.

  7. The one thread I see throughout many of these comments is that prejudice against minorities based on the actions of 2 students is alive and well at BU. These remarks are the equivalent to racial or ethnic prejudice….judge an entire group of individuals based on (yet to be determined as far as the actual “hazing” occurring) an isolated incident. I guess it is good to know that the rest of the BU student population is above drinking and partying and that they spend their spare time doing philanthropy work to help others in need.

    1. Ha! That’s a laugh. It is fraternities and sororities that promote prejudice. They’re basically a continuation of the “old boy’s club”. You think us poor students on scholarship can afford to pay hundreds of dollars a year for friends? It is pure discrimination.

  8. Sigh.
    Greek life has high rates of alcohol-related incidents and has been proven to be associated with high levels of drinking.

    please see the table on pg. 401 (or feel free to read the whole thing)


    It’s not BU, but this is also not the only study that brings this point home.
    FACT: Greek members drink more.
    FACT: Drinking more is associated with negative health outcomes (like, hospital visits)

    Take what you will, but Greek life certainly does not breed a culture of “healthy drinking attitudes.”

  9. Greeks have always had a reputation for really stupid behavior, clickiness, and immaturity. Yes, college is a time to have fun and have an occasional beer with friends, but you need to control yourself and act like an adult. People label Greeks as bimbos and bros all the time, and there is truth in it! As part of the better sorority community, it’s your responsibility to change that! Help sisters drink responsibly, have fun responsibly, and increase self-esteem, not loose it while throwing up behind a dumpster in allston. What kind of shitty sisterhood allows that?! Yeah right.

    1. This is actually good feedback. I don’t necessarily hate Greek life, but even though I’m not in it, I don’t have a hard time seeing which groups get the message of Greek life (leadership and philanthropy) and which groups don’t. Some people are always going to party, you’re right. But if the brothers and sisters are allowing, encouraging, or blowing it off like it doesn’t matter, that’s where the problem lies, absolutely.

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