Campus News

UB responds to suspected fraternity hazing

By UBNOW STAFF

Published April 15, 2019

“As the investigation into this very serious matter continues, let me reiterate that our university has zero tolerance for hazing. Not only are hazing incidents a violation of our university policies, but they are also crimes.”
Satish K. Tripathi, Person's Title
UB president

The UB community is deeply concerned about the health and well-being of our student whose injuries, Buffalo Police suspect, may have resulted from a hazing incident that occurred early Friday, April 12.

The university is in contact with the student’s family and is providing whatever assistance and comfort it can during this very difficult time, and hopes for the very best for the student. He has been identified as Sebastian Serafin-Bazan, an 18-year-old freshman from Port Chester, N.Y.

UB officials confirmed that he is a patient at Buffalo General Hospital, but can't provide an update on his medical condition because of federal privacy laws protecting patient information.

University Police are working closely with Buffalo Police as they investigate the incident involving the Sigma Pi fraternity, and university officials also will conduct an internal review into the fraternity’s activities. Anyone with any information about this incident is urged to immediately contact University Police at 645-2222.

At the direction of UB President Satish K. Tripathi, effective immediately and until further notice, the official activities of all fraternities and sororities have been suspended.

Beginning this week, the university will launch an internal review into the activities of Greek-letter, social, fraternal organizations at UB. An internal review committee, formed by UB Vice President for Student Life A. Scott Weber, will examine each organization’s health and safety educational programs, policies and practices, with a special focus on anti-hazing.

In a statement issued to the university campus Friday afternoon, Tripathi said:

“This morning, I was informed that one of our UB students had been hospitalized with a serious medical condition as the result of a possible hazing incident. We have reached out to the student’s family and are providing all the assistance and comfort we can to them during this incredibly difficult time. I ask you to keep this student – one of our own -- and his family in your thoughts.

“As the investigation into this very serious matter continues, let me reiterate that our university has zero tolerance for hazing. Not only are hazing incidents a violation of our university policies, but they are also crimes."

The full statement is available on President Tripathi's website.

The university cannot state strongly enough that it has zero tolerance for hazing and will aggressively pursue any suspected incidents of hazing. All Greek-letter social, fraternal organizations will again be strongly counseled about UB’s zero tolerance policy on hazing and will be cautioned about the serious consequences of hazing.

While federal privacy law prohibits UB from commenting on disciplinary proceedings involving individual students, whenever there is a serious violation of UB’s student code of conduct, such as hazing, students face suspension and the possibility of expulsion from the university.

UB is committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for our students to pursue their studies and participate in appropriate activities that are an essential part of the university experience.

More information about UB’s policies on Greek life is available at www.buffalo.edu/news/key-issues/hazing.html. Additional information is also available in an FAQ posted on the UB NewsCenter site.