Ax falls on Greek Life

Emily Clauss, News Editor

Bloomsburg University image

All Greek life at Bloomsburg is halted permanently following the tragic death of two students and a string of recent transgressions.

The news broke early this afternoon in an email sent from President Hanna to all BU students. It states, “Dear BU Community: Effective immediately, Bloomsburg University is terminating its fraternity and sorority life (FSL) program and severing ties with all national and local FSL organizations currently affiliated with the University. All students are reminded that their conduct remains subject to all applicable University policies, including: PRP 4802 – Student Code of Conduct and Judicial Process.”

This past Saturday, Leah Burke, a sophomore nursing major, passed away at Geisinger Medical Center following an incident outside a greek life house. Montour County Coroner Scott Lynn told local news outlets Thursday that there were no signs of a traumatic injury and

“nothing nefarious is suspected after an autopsy.”

Burke was at a gathering on East Third Street when her roommate noticed she was in distress and took her to the Geisinger Bloomsburg Hospital. From there, Burke was taken by helicopter to Geisinger Medical Center, where she died, Lynn said. While toxicology test results have not been returned, Lynn indicated all signs,

“point to an undiagnosed medical condition,”

as the cause of Burke’s death. Town police are looking into the death but have not completed their investigation.

Another student, Justin King was found dead in an embankment in September of 2019. King’s death is also linked to Greek life as he attended a fraternity rush party and was given excess amounts of alcohol prior to his death.

In late January 2021, four Greek life organizations, Sigma Iota Omega (ΣΙΩ), Chi Theta Pi (ΧΘΠ), Kappa Delta Rho (ΚΔΡ), and Lambda Chi Alpha (ΛΧΑ) were suspended for various misconducts. Some of the offenses included sexual misconduct, multiple accounts of hazing, and hosting a large gathering during the pandemic. 

The Voice will continue to provide updates as more information is gathered.