LEXINGTON, Ky. — In October, the University of Kentucky lost a student to suspected alcohol poisoning. In response, the university announced additional measures inter-fraternity council chapters would take to ensure student safety.
Corrine Williams, acting associate vice president for student welfare at UofL, said a new formation came after freshman Thomas “Lofton” Hazelwood passed away.
“We set up a two-hour training session. And what we did was we had four games,” Williams said.
With nearly 1,000 students in attendance, the sessions focused on alcohol and drug use, hazing, witness training and interpersonal violence.
“For example, the case study on interpersonal violence. You come home after a night out. You see a woman walking alone and suddenly a man approaches her. You’re pretty sure they don’t know each other. You’re pretty sure she’s drunk. Do you think he’s trying to get her to come home with him? What are you doing?” Williams said.
Williams says situations like these case studies encourage students to reflect on their actions both on and off campus.
“Especially within these fraternities, they’re in positions where maybe they’re going to be faced with a situation and we wanted them to be ready for that situation,” Williams said.
Isaac Sutherland, a sophomore in the Chi Psi fraternity, said that after the incident with Hazelwood, the university suspended many activities.
“We really need to push our guys to not just get out of bed and go to class in the morning, but we really need to get them to do specific training to get us back on campus, that’s what we need to do,” says Sutherland.
Some of these changes included suspended interactions between new members and old members and participation in required new training.
“It’s been hard for us as a fraternity to really figure out how we can interact with these guys that we’ve been with for six weeks and try to form that as a four-year connection, if we can’t even talk to them. , right? And there’s a lot of frustration behind that,” Sutherland said.
Williams and Sutherland say they hope the new training will build a deeper connection with staff and students in fraternity and sorority life by expanding conversations and creating a safe environment for everyone.
The Student Welfare Department said there were about three hundred fraternity and sorority students left to train. From there, they hope to implement the training outside of Greek life and share it with the entire student body.