Old Dominion University Fraternity: ‘Sexually Suggestive’ Welcome Banners Leads To Suspension

Old Dominion University Fraternity: ‘Sexually Suggestive’ Welcome Banners Leads To Suspension
Clock Tower at Rush Hour Will Fisher / Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0
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After sexually suggestive banners welcoming freshman women at a Virginia college were seen draped over balconies, at least one of the school’s fraternities was suspended for its involvement in the activity.

The white signs hanging from the balconies of the Old Dominion University could seen bearing the phrases, “Rowdy and fun, hope your baby is ready for a good time,” “Freshman Daughter Drop Off” and “Go ahead and Drop Off Mom Too.”


Although the signs have been since been taken down, a picture showing the same has been making rounds on social media platforms.

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Involvement of fraternity members in activity

According to Jezebel, members of the fraternity Sigma Nu live at the off-campus house.

Brad Beacham, the executive director of Sigma Nu’s national headquarters, said in a Facebook post, “Sigma Nu Fraternity has suspended the activities of the Eta Chi chapter at Old Dominion University pending investigation into offensive banners displayed from an off-campus, privately-owned property near the ODU campus last week.

“Initial reports regarding the banners indicated that no Fraternity member had involvement with the banners. However, additional information received by the Fraternity today indicates that some chapter members may have had involvement with the banners. … The Fraternity will remain in close communication with ODU administrators throughout its investigation and review.”

School spokeswoman Giovanna M. Genard said the ODU appreciated the fraternity’s actions. He said they are thankful to Sigma Nu for partnering with Old Dominion University in their making of a strong statement against the wrong behaviors of the student members. They announced suspension of the local chapter’s activities.

As reported by WTKR, the school released a statement after the news of the signs spread like wildfire.

“Messages like the ones displayed yesterday by a few students on the balcony of their private residence are not and will not be tolerated. The moment University staff became aware of these banners, they worked to have them removed. At ODU, we foster a community of respect and dignity and these messages sickened us. They are not representative of our 3,000 faculty and staff, 25,000 students and our 130,000 alumni. Ours is a community that works actively to promote bystander intervention and takes a stand denouncing violence against women.”

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‘These actions’ are ‘unwelcoming, offensive, and unacceptable’

Old Dominion President John Broderick said he was outraged over the incident. He posted a message on the university’s Facebook page.

“I am outraged about the offensive message directed toward women that was visible for a time on 43rd Street. Our students, campus community and alumni have been offended. While we constantly educate students, faculty and staff about sexual assault and sexual harassment, this incident confirms our collective efforts are still failing to register with some.”

In a video statement, the school’s Student Government Association said, “Not only do these actions taken by a few individuals undermine the countless efforts at Old Dominion University to prevent sexual assault, they are also unwelcoming, offensive, and unacceptable.”

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