Sorority closed amid hazing allegations

By Laura Geller - bio | email

FARMVILLE, VA (WWBT) - Hazing and underage drinking are the reasons a sorority has been forced to shut down at Longwood University. The sorority's own national chapter gave that order.

What began with a phone call to a national hazing hotline has left some wondering if the centuries-old founding chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha will ever return to Longwood University.  Fellow Greek students tell us they can't imagine what could have happened to force such drastic action.

With commencement just two days away students still belonging to Longwood's Greek community are left reeling from the Zeta decision.

"I just went into shock because as a Greek, I could not imagine what would happen if my chapter was taken away.  It's such a big part around here.  I was in shock," said Alpha Gamma Delta member Amanda Bolton.

The now closed Zeta sorority's national president writes: "Closing any chapter is a painful decision. Closing your first chapter is difficult beyond words. But all chapters must abide by the ideals and principles of our sisterhood if they wish to remain a part of our organization."

In fact, this was the Alpha chapter's second chance at redemption. The group had just been reinstated after mid-March complaints of hazing and underage drinking. The national organization says after coming back, members continued to violate standards.

"It's just college life with letters on it basically. Nothing happens different from when you have letters on than when you don't," said Phi Kappa Tau member Peter Mancuso.

These students say there are many rumors floating around campus, but no one is positive about what exactly happened.

"Each chapter has different standards so I don't know what their standards and their code of conduct is, but they were a very good group of girls and I just don't understand it," said Bolton.

Both Longwood University and the national Zeta Tau Alpha organization say they hope the chapter can return to campus at some point down the road, especially given its long history at the institution.

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