About a week ago, Binghamton University made the front page of The New York Times. Unfortunately, it wasn’t for commendation. Heading New York’s most-read newspaper, Binghamton was condemned. Apparently, among everything going on in the world, our Greek Life issues were deemed some of the most important.
I guess there really is no contest between the importance of Binghamton’s fraternities and sororities and the war in Syria, Israel and Iran, the upcoming election, the release of the iPhone 5, Mitt Romney’s tax returns and hell, even the one-year anniversary of Occupy Wall Street. Yeah, that makes sense.
On Sept. 18, The New York Times published “At a Campus Scarred by Hazing, Cries for Help.” On April 19, 2012, they also published “At Binghamton University, Halt to Pledging Amid Hazing Concern.” Both articles were written by New York City native Peter Applebome. I really wonder what Mr. Applebome has against Binghamton. Maybe he didn’t get in.
Since last March, Binghamton University administrators have been aggressively pursuing rumors of hazing at multiple Greek organizations. Although none of the rumors were from those directly involved, it was clear something needed to be done.
On April 11, 2012, Binghamton took a gallant step forward by preventing any and all new-member events. And since then, University President Harvey Stenger and other officials have been investigating further.
Binghamton’s administrators are aware of this issue and are taking all necessary precautions, as are many members of Greek Life who want to reconstruct the system and make it better.
Greek Life is a great campus contribution, but its members only make up about 10 percent of our student body.
Why has The New York Times published only negative articles about Binghamton? And why have so many of our accomplishments gone unrecognized?
In Sept. 2011, Harpur’s Ferry was awarded the Collegiate EMS Organization of the Year. Harpur’s Ferry also won this award back in 2005, making Binghamton the first organization to win it twice. Where’s Applebome’s article on that?
This past August New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo approved the NYSUNY 2020 application for Binghamton University. This plan includes a $70 million grant to develop a Smart Energy Center that will allow for more than 800 jobs at the University and other privately owned companies.
Governor Cuomo is eager to further improve our University.
“The Binghamton University plan will maximize the economic impact that one of New York’s most prominent university centers has on the Empire State,” Cuomo said. “I look forward to seeing the plan in action, as Binghamton University creates jobs on campus and throughout the Southern Tier … and gives more students access to a top quality public higher education that is second to none in the nation and around the world.”
As the cost of living in New York continues to rise, attending a prestigious public school has become a necessity, and all of New York should be aware of this exciting new endeavor for Binghamton. I’d like to see that published in The New York Times.
We all know that these hazing articles are not who we are and will not define us.
Binghamton University is an incredible school made up of 11,861 intelligent, determined and compassionate undergraduate students and that is what deserves to make front page.