Hazing News

SUNY Albany death: some suspect this was with an underground fraternity

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Excerpt: from WNYT’s Anna Meillar


ALBANY – Campus wide, University at Albany students are mourning the death of Trevor Duffy, the 19-year-old sophomore who died after an underage drinking party on Hamilton Street.

“Everyone’s kind of shaken up. No one likes to see that,” said Henry Moers, a senior at the university.

His death is sparking a conversation on social media, with students sharing their thoughts on the anonymous social media app called Yik Yak.

“About frats and hazing and how dangerous they can be,” said freshman, Marissa Guttenberg.

Students say the incident likely happened within an underground fraternity- an organized social group similar to Greek life, but one that is not recognized by the university.

“There’s a lot of underground frats. You hear about it, but you’re told also by anybody in charge, like your R.A., not to join them because they get risky,” said Guttenberg.

One of those risks? Students say some underground fraternities turn what should be a social activity into a dangerous challenge.

“You have to drink, you have to take another shot, you have to do more and more to be accepted,” said Gerald Finn, a senior.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily-- and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

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