Temple University cancels Spring Fling event, citing drinking

NORTH PHILADELPHIA - August 27, 2013

Published reports said officials will work with student groups to create a new campus-wide replacement for the Spring Fling.

Officials did not refer to the April death of 19-year-old Ali Fausnaught, a West Chester University student who fell from the third-story roof of a north Philadelphia row house during an off-campus rooftop party near Temple during Spring Fling.

Temple President Neil Theobald, however, said he had asked several top officials to meet to consider the future of the event after the conclusion of the most recent Spring Fling, and he told The Temple News that it's been clear for months that the event would not carry out as usual.

"It's kind of been hijacked by a group of people that make this into a bacchanal, a drinking fest," Theobald said. "We're not involved in that."

Officials said Spring Fling began when Temple was still a commuter school and was conceived of as a day for the whole student body to gather and celebrate, but concerns about alcohol consumption have grown with the school's residential population.

"A dangerous culture of high-risk drinking has infiltrated the event, undermining our academic mission and our duty to safeguard student health and wellness," Stephanie Ives, dean of students, said in the email.

Officials also cited a detrimental impact on the academic climate, with scores of students skipping classes for the day and some reports of professors even canceling classes.

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