Here we go again. As the spring semester heats up, Greek Letter Organizations from coast to coast will be busy bringing in new members, but some fraternities and sororities take new member initiation too far.

Seven members of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority at the University of Maryland, College Park were charged with hazing and assaulting a pledge who was attempting to join the organization last October. According to complainant, she asserts current and/or former members of the sorority assaulted her on more than three occasions.

The women, ranging in ages from 20 to 26, are scheduled to appear in a Prince George’s County courtroom today.

According to The Washington Post, “The women are accused of pushing the pledge into a wall, hitting her arms and repeatedly striking her with an oak paddle, according to charging documents. Police say the assaults all occurred off campus and resulted in ‘severe bruising’ on the student’s arms and chest.”

After dropping from the pledging process, the complainant reported the alleged assault to university officials, who promptly called the police and suspended the sorority indefinitely.

Although hazing is illegal and outlawed by all Greek Letter Organizations, some still participate in the process under the guise of preserving traditions and fostering sister/brotherhood. However, many members worry that hazing incidents not only damage the reputation of the organizations, but also threaten its future. With many facing expensive lawsuits, Black Greek Letter Organization presidents worry that their beloved organizations are just one major lawsuit away from extinction.

Zeta Phi Beta was founded in 1920 at Howard University and boasts such influential members as Zora Neal Hurston, Gwendolyn Brooks, Dr. Deborah P. Wolfe, and Sarah Vaughan.


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  • This is just really embarrassing. I was a student at UMD and I was impressed with the Zeta Phi Beta sorority when they performed at the step show. Now I do not know what to think. What sense does it make to beat pledges when their membership numbers were dwindling already?

  • i know rite…such a shame…they need to get it together….n black frats/sororities…need to stop thinking they’re above these hazing laws…lol

  • Miss Jae

    I hate when incidents like this happen because it paints all BGLOs in a bad light. Not only that, but it tends to overshadow the good that we do for the community. (past & present) But unfortunately, there are bad people no matter where you turn…citizens that take the law into their own hands, black on black crime, police that think they are above the law, crooked politicians, judges that have been paid off, & presidents that start wars for no damn reason. That does not mean that ALL of the folks in these positions (or in BGLOs) are bad…

    Some folks are quick to point fingers, but my question to those people is, what have YOU done for your community lately?

  • Fox

    Who snitchin?

  • Blackbird

    I hate when things such as this happens. It’s more negativity being brought upon your organization and it outshines the positive things of your organizations. Being a member of one these great Black sororities, I find it difficult to understand why some people will take things that far, and why some pledgees will stand for that knowing it’s against what they believe. It’s just not right. At the first instance, stop it. It’s your own right.