ATHENS, Ohio — Ohio University announced Tuesday that it's mandating students, staff and faculty to take a training on hazing prevention.
Users are required to complete quizzes and modules to learn why hazing is illegal in Ohio and how they can prevent it from happening. The training will be sent out this week.
“Ohio University does not tolerate hazing,” President Hugh Sherman said in a statement. “This required training will provide critical information and resources to help our community understand that every member of our University community is responsible for the prevention of hazing.”
The training comes two months after Gov. Mike DeWine signed the anti-hazing legislation Collin's Law, named after the death of Ohio University student Collin Wiant, who died following a hazing incident.
Collin's Law will increase criminal penalties for hazing, which includes forced consumption of drugs and alcohol. It widens the scope for who can be punished for participating in the act and will have all student organizations on college campuses report any student conduct violations they have had every six months.
Hazing will go from being a fourth-degree misdemeanor to a second-degree misdemeanor. It also widens the list of officials who are required to report it, and if they don't, they will be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor. School faculty and staff will also be required to participate in hazing awareness and prevention training.
Lawmakers attempted to pass the law earlier in 2019. It passed the Ohio House in November 2020. It was then sent to the Senate Education Committee, but didn't make it past the General Assembly before the end of the term.
Renewed push for the law came after the death of Bowling Green State Student Stone Foltz, who died after an alleged hazing incident in March.
"We simply in Ohio cannot tolerate hazing, and we are saying with this bill we will not tolerate hazing. This is really a question of culture and for decades, the culture of hazing has been accepted as something that is tolerated," DeWine said. "This law will say, 'We do not tolerate this in the state of Ohio.'"
In July, Ohio University suspended the Beta Chapter of Delta Tau Delta for four years on hazing allegations. It also suspended the Delta Pi chapter of Sigma Chi in late July on hazing violations for four years.
"Embedded at the end of the training is an opportunity to affirm that the user has read and understood Ohio University’s policies regarding hazing," Sherman said. "A certification of completion is also provided after successful completion of the module. Please save a copy of your completion documentation for future reference."
Bowling Green State University also permanently banned Pi Kappa Alpha (PIKE) following the death of Foltz.