Ursinus College cancels swimming team's season after hazing investigation

COLLEGEVILLE, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- Ursinus College has canceled the remainder of the swimming season for both men's and women's teams following a hazing scandal.

In a lengthy statement released by the college on Friday, officials did not get into specifics about what exactly happened but stated, "... the men's and women's swimming teams had committed violations of the college's anti-hazing policy and student code of conduct."

The statement went on to say, "The incident involved alcohol and underage drinking."

Officials with The Division III school located in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania also put the coach on probation.


"Coach Mark Feinberg supports and agrees with this decision and, as coach and mentor, assumes a share of responsibility for the actions of both the men's and women's teams. He is now placed on probation and will work on addressing specific action items and strengthening his teams' culture moving forward," the statement said.

Several student-athletes, who are not on the swim team, said last week a meeting was called for all student-athletes to discuss hazing. Freshman baseball player Pedro Torres said during that meeting, "They wanted to inform us that as a community we know what to do if that situation was to ever occur."



His teammate Brady Antolick, also a freshman added, "It's pretty impressive the school took such action against hazing."

But some students working at the campus' athletic center said they heard there is more to the story, and from what they are hearing, the school may have overreacted.

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Ursinus College cancels swimming team's season after hazing investigation. Annie McCormick has more on Action News at 10 p.m. on November 24, 2019.



Ethan Ferraro was playing intramural basketball with friends and said, "I'm hearing that it wasn't all that serious and it was a big overreaction--that's the students' reaction. There are multiple sides to the story of course. I think it's really upsetting the seniors are going to miss their season over something so silly I think the school could've handled it better."

You can read the statement in full below:

"On Friday afternoon, Ursinus College announced the men's and women's swimming teams had committed violations of the college's anti-hazing policy and student code of conduct. The incident involved alcohol and underage drinking and, after the conclusion of a thorough investigation that began in early September, the college has canceled the remainder of the 2019-2020 swimming season.

While the decision to cancel the season was difficult, the safety and well-being of every student at Ursinus are our greatest priorities. Ursinus College does not tolerate hazing or any action that is antithetical to our values and our mission. To those who may have been personally affected by this event, we understand that this has been a difficult experience for you. We remain dedicated to your well-being, as we are for every student, and thank you for placing your trust in us.

Ursinus works hard to create a student culture and safe living environment that is respectful of every individual, and moving forward we are fully committed to providing meaningful learning experiences for all student-athletes. We will work together to improve our culture and learn from this experience.



Coach Mark Feinberg supports and agrees with this decision and, as coach and mentor, assumes a share of responsibility for the actions of both the men's and women's teams. He is now placed on probation and will work on addressing specific action items and strengthening his teams' culture moving forward.

We are hopeful this experience will lead to a more vigorous dialogue about promoting courage and personal responsibility while cultivating and affirming a stronger community. Faculty, staff and all students must hold ourselves and each other accountable to ensure the safety of every member of the community, and we encourage everyone on campus to report any violations that may endanger individuals across campus.

Ursinus has a proud legacy of success in academics and in athletics. It is our aim to meet-and exceed whenever possible-our high expectations for both. Moving forward, the Ursinus family reaffirms the guiding principles of our community values statement and will continue to find ways to embrace the ideals of inclusivity, excellence, inquiry and ethical decision-making in all we do."
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