Feb 1, 2012

James H. Ammons, president of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, announced on Tuesday that he will be suspending the induction, enrollment, initiation, membership intake and recruitment for all student clubs and organizations until fall 2012. He also announced the cancellation of the band's summer camp for 2012.

This announcement comes in the wake of the hazing related death of drum major Robert Champion as well as the arrest of four other band members for an unrelated hazing event.

Ammons made the decision to suspend intake and other membership activities after discussions with student leaders, advisors and other university personnel.

“Our top priority is the health, safety and well-being of students,” said Ammons. “We are convening a panel of experts and outstanding thinkers to provide advice and recommendations on the operation of student organizations. Before we enter into a new student intake process, we should have the benefit of the work coming from the committees and the investigations.”

Ammons decided to canceled the bands summer camp in light of the ongoing investigations into the death of Robert Champion. A Board of Trustees committee was being convened to tackle the issue of hazing and to make recommendations as to how FAMU will best govern band activities. Ammons said he would like to give this panel, the board and the administration the opportunity to do a thorough review before reinstating any marching band programs.

“In no way have we terminated our curriculum in music,” said Ammons. ‘We have a group of talented music faculty who prepare students for great careers in music and other pursuits. We will continue this very important academic program for the benefit of any current students or future students that might choose to pursue this degree. We have also continued our scholarship support of students who meet the appropriate criteria and will continue to do so, pending the availability of funds.”



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