NewsLocal NewsSan Diego News


SDSU launches two task forces in wake of student's death

Posted at 5:05 PM, Nov 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-27 20:50:31-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - San Diego State University is launching two task forces after a 19-year-old died earlier this month after attending a fraternity event.

Dylan Hernandez died Nov. 8 after falling out of the top bunk in his dorm.

In the wake of the tragedy, SDSU suspended all 14 of its fraternities. On Wednesday, it announced the creation of two task forces to address student life and attack issues that may have led to Hernandez's death.

RELATED: Cause determined after San Diego State University student dies

One task force will study student activities and safety, while the other will investigate alcohol and substance misuse.

About half of the 28 members are university employees and administrators, while about five are current students.

Erik Johannesen, a chapter advisor for the Delta Sigma Phi, will participate in the task force on activities and safety.

"Fraternities, when they're operating well, they're the great finishing school for every young man that joins one," said Johannesen, who graduated SDSU in 1981. "When we are off our game we are absolutely deplorable in terms of what our behavior can be."

RELATED: San Diego State suspends 14 fraternities after student is hospitalized

The makeup of the boards are already under scrutiny due to the lack of current students.

"They're the ones that will tell you how they drink, and where the risk is, and they're the ones that have to buy in," said education attorney Bob Ottilie. "When you get rules from the top down, they're not followed."

A spokeswoman for SDSU said additional task force members will likely be added in the coming weeks.

The two groups will start meeting this fall and will produce their own reports that could potentially turn into action.