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For Colleges, Fraternity Woes can Cost Big Bucks

March 23, 2015

CBS News
By Erik Sherman

It’s been a bad month for the nation’s university Greek fraternity system. The last few weeks saw allegations of racist slurs at a University of Oklahoma fraternity, suspension of a Penn State frat over a secret Facebook page with posted photos of nude women, and racist and sexist email from a University of Maryland fraternity member.

Whether the issue is sexual harassment and assault, racism, hazing and bullying, or even accidents from drinking, such incidents raise numerous moral, ethical and social issues for the public. Universities and colleges have an additional aspect they must consider: business.

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“You look at the micro of any particular situation, and it’s very hard to think of a situation in which a good lawyer can’t find a hook to name the university,” said John Myers, chair of the higher education group at Philadelphia law firm Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads.

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