Jordan Initiative Informs Grand Council on Hazing

Participants taught prevention and bystander intervention in Skokie, Ill.
July 6, 2014

The participants at the June 27 to 28 Grand Council convention shared an experience that helped educate them in identifying and intervening against acts of hazing. The Jordan Initiative committee organized an experiential activity that forced participants to confront all forms of hazing—not just the egregious acts of extreme hazing that are most commonly associated with the practice. These less visible forms include mental hazing, forcing pledges to act in servant roles, and similar practices that some chapters deem acceptable.

The committee prepared nearly four hours of discussion and activity time so that Grand Council’s undergraduate and alumni attendees would be better equipped to identify even the most minor acts of hazing, in order to completely eradicate them from chapter life. In pursuit of that goal, the committee facilitated a discussion around the topic of why members do not step in when they see their brothers committing hazing acts, and urged participants to brainstorm ways to intervene in such cases.

Jordan Initiative chairman Jim Holcomb, CAL. STATE-SACRAMENTO 1994, opened the Jordan Initiative discussion with a 45-minute presentation that touched upon four main themes: 1) That the world expects more of Sigma Chis than it does of other men; 2) that everyone has inherent value and dignity; 3) that choosing to do the right thing is often more difficult than choosing the popular thing, and the need to overcome one’s inhibitions against intervening when one witness injustice; and 4) the need for our members to be awesome and love each other.

The Jordan Initiative presentation served as an introduction to the Fraternity’s newest educational workshop. Developed in partnership with the James R. Favor and Co., the workshop will be ready for its Alpha-testing phase at undergraduate chapters in January 2015.

If you have questions about the Jordan Initiative, or if your chapter is interested in becoming involved in the program’s Alpha-testing phase, please contact Senior Director of Membership Development Jim Cogdal, BRADLEY 2003, at (847) 869-3655, ext. 253, or jim.cogdal@sigmachi.org.