Article Review: University Probes Death of Student


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There is an investigation taking place at St. Thomas University with regards to the sudden death of Andrew Bartlett after a hazing incident the night before. He was found dead in his apartment early in the morning of the 24th of October. The Fredericton Police Force does not suspect intentional foul play. Bartlett had recently joined the varsity volleyball team and was allegedly being hazed as a part of the rookie initiation. Dennis Cochrane the president of the university ordered an investigation supported also by Larry Batt dean of students and Mike eagles the athletic director. There is strict policy against hazing and Cochrane is ready to hand out disciplinary action once the investigation is complete.

The importance of this issue lies in the underground culture of sports teams. Hazing is an initiation practice that can be light hearted in it's nature but often can cross the line between a little rough practical joking and assault. Some of the events that take place in a hazing could qualify as a criminal offense and are therefore clearly not in the area of harmless play. Relevance of this issue pertains to our own sporting community and possible hazings that take place within the teams. Initiation is easily part of a teams' group dynamic but one must make sure that things do not get out of hand. Board policy obviously forbids hazing but people of authority have very little direct influence in behind the scene team activities. It is the role of the players, and to some extent the coach as well, to prevent inappropriate behavior and speak out if the line is crossed.

I believe that hazing is perhaps not the most positive way to welcome new members and build team spirit. I recognize what the less violent version of hazing is in the team culture, but generally speaking I find it excessive. I mean, how far do you have to go to prove that you are indeed the alpha male?

Overall hazing is widely regarded as an unacceptable initiation process and has been banned in sports communities across the country. As we can see, this practice can easily become excessive and can result in mental of physical or mental injury and sadly can also result in death.


Cormer, Molly. "University probes death of student." National Post, 03 Nov 2010. Web. 4 Nov 2010. <>.