University Suspends All Fraternities & Sororities After Teen Is Found Unconscious

West Virginia University has made a controversial and wise decision to suspend all of its fraternities and sororities after an 18-year-old freshman student was found unconscious and not breathing at a fraternity house. Nolan Michael Burch, who is from Buffalo, New York, was discovered not breathing and without a pulse at Kappa Sigma house on Wednesday night. University officials called it a "catastrophic medical emergency," and the teen was placed in intensive care at a local hospital. This incident proved to be the last straw after a different fraternity, Sigma Chi, was suspended a week before for a street brawl involving 19 pledges who were reportedly drunk.


Fraternities and sororities have been making headlines lately for all the wrong reasons -- namely because of hazing rituals involving alcohol that sometimes result in injuries or even death or because of drunken parties that are unsupervised. Slowly but surely, some universities are putting their foot down and letting these organizations know that there are consequences for their actions.

Clemson University, for example, suspended all frat activities in September after 19-year-old Tucker Hipps died while pledging Sigma Phi Epsilon. Penn State suspended Phi Sigma Kappa last spring after 18-year-old Marquise Braham committed suicide -- allegedly because he couldn't take the harsh hazing rituals.

The message here is clear: children, which is essentially what they are, should not be allowed to do whatever they want unchecked. I mean, some of the stories we are hearing about these frats sound like they've been pulled straight out of Lord of the Flies.

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Parents pay a lot of money to send their children to get a good education. No parent wants to receive a phone call saying her son has been arrested or cited for underage possession of alcohol and that he was caught because he was out on the street brawling and running around like a crazy person at 2 in the morning. West Virginia University should be applauded for doing the responsible thing.

Do you agree with the school for suspending its fraternities and sororities, or did officials go too far?


Image via JoshBerglund19/Flickr

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