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What is hazing?

Hazing is defined as any action taken or situation created, intentionally or unintentionally, whether on or off University premises and whether presented as optional or required, to produce: mental, physical, or emotional discomfort; servitude; degradation; embarrassment; harassment; or ridicule for the purpose of initiation into, affiliation with, or admission to, or as a condition for continued membership in a group, team, or other organization, regardless of an individual’s willingness to participate.

How to report hazing

Reports can be made via online form or directly to the Office of Community Standards.

File an Online Report

Reporter: Any individual can use EthicsPoint, which has anonymous reporting options.

Confidentiality: While such complaints will retain anonymity, the University's ability to investigate and respond to anonymous complaints is limited

File an EthicsPoint Report

Report to the Office of Community Standards

Reporter: Any individual may report hazing

Confidentiality: The University will keep your information as private as possible

Contact the Office

Learn more about this issue

Frequently Asked Questions

Who will see my report?

Online reports will be reviewed by staff in University Compliance and referred over to the Office of Community Standards.

What will happen to me after I report?

University staff may contact you if there are additional questions about the information you reported.

What are the next steps? Will I be told the resolution or outcome of what I shared?

The Office of Community Standards staff will review the report and work collaboratively with campus partners to ensure the concerning behavior is addressed appropriately. In most situations, the reporter will not be made aware of the resolution or outcome.

Who can I talk to if I have questions about hazing?

If you have questions about what could be hazing or would like to discuss tradition/practices or need assistance in improving the effectiveness of your organization's new member process, please contact the Office of Campus Life at

Is there an amnesty policy for reporting hazing?

An individual who makes a timely good faith report of hazing and/or participates in good faith in an investigation will not be subject to disciplinary action by the University for conduct or policy violation(s) related to and revealed in the report or investigation (i.e. underage consumption of alcohol or use of drugs), unless the University determines that the violation was serious and/or placed the health or safety of others at risk. The University may follow up with good faith participants in an informal manner. This provision may also apply to student organizations/groups making a report of hazing involving individual members.

Know your rights: Northwestern's Non-Retaliation Policy

Northwestern's Policy on Non-Retaliation strictly prohibits retaliation against any member of its community for reporting or inquiring in good faith about suspected wrongful or unlawful activity, or participating in an investigation or proceeding related to such activity. The University considers such actions to be protected activities in which all members may freely engage without worry of negative consequences.