Prescription for Disaster: The Problem of 'Hidden Harms' and Hazing

Campus Activities Programming, January/February 2009

4 Pages Posted: 3 Feb 2009


Despite university policies prohibiting hazing, student groups continue to subject new members to harmful rituals. These rituals often include physical and psychological abuse, and forced alcohol consumption. Today, with more students who suffer from mental disorders and/or who use or abuse prescription drugs, hazing activities are a prescription for disaster, wrought with both human and legal consequences. To address the problem of "hidden harm" - students hazing other students with special challenges - college administrators should continue to send strong and regular anti-hazing messages. This article provides guidance and advice on this topic.

Keywords: hazing, hidden harm, college, university, prescription drugs, alcohol, mental health, mental disorder, higher education, higher education law

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

Dickerson, Darby, Prescription for Disaster: The Problem of 'Hidden Harms' and Hazing. Campus Activities Programming, January/February 2009. Available at SSRN:

Darby Dickerson (Contact Author)

UIC John Marshall Law School ( email )

300 S. State Street
Chicago, IL 60604
United States

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