I’m ambitious, focused on my school work, and driven. I have a knack for weird tea mugs and watching crappy movies “in the name of irony”. I’m currently ¼ of the way through a really interesting novel. I have some random and obscure interests and hobbies that range from Galapagos Island tortoises (I can’t even explain that one) to kickboxing. I try my best to get involved in activities on campus and I volunteer off-campus as well. Oh, and I’m also in a sorority.
As a member of a Greek organization, I am always proud to represent my letters and get involved in a multitude of philanthropy events. I attend those held by my own chapter and those held by others too. As much as I love spending time with my “sisters” and attending fun social events as often as possible: Greek life is not all that there is to my life. Although I have joined a group of young women with similar values and attitudes as mine, I am very much my own person.
It’s becoming harder and harder to stereotype specific Greek organizations based off of an archetype, as the presence of “unicorns” that stray from the “typical (insert letters) girl” are becoming more and more abundant. You can’t necessarily say that everyone in one sorority are mean blonde girls from the valley who all own toy poodles, nor can you say that another only consists of red-headed physics majors hailing from South Carolina. It’s not that superficial. It’s not that exclusive. It’s not that deep.
The main components that separate each chapter on campus are their nationwide philanthropies which they support, the location of their members on campus, the chants they sing and the inside jokes they share. We’re all different in that aspect. Each individual girl’s personality and interests are also different. What I’m trying to say here is that we are not sorority robots. Sorority membership is not exclusive to clones of Elle Woods.
Despite our differences and involvement in other activities on campus, we are all the same in how we connected on campus through this broad organization. I cannot say I know one single person who is only involved in Greek life and has never tried anything else. We all care about our fellow Greek friends as much as the next person, but we also have other things going on in our lives.
Popularity and vanity are not the core values of these Greek organizations. The purpose of joining is to surround yourself with a great support system. And I’m not just saying that. I’m not trying to come across as corny and say that I’ve met the best people I’ve ever known through Greek life and my lifelong friends and my sisters and blah blah blah (even though, that’s sort of accurate).
I’m just saying that joining a sorority means that someone will always have your back. Whether that pertains to having someone to sit next to in a huge lecture hall or someone to rush you to the hospital when you have some sort of medical emergency (knock on wood). Your fellow peers will always be looking out for you because you are connected to them through some common Greek letters.
This support system extends beyond your own specific chapter to others within the Greek community. We all work to help each other raise money for philanthropy fundraisers or step up to reach out during times of tragedy. Getting involved in Greek life means that you will always have someone else to look after you and that you will also have to look out for others.
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As much as I’d love to push for many of my GDI friends to get involved in Greek Life, it’s not for everyone. As much of a low commitment as my sorority may seem to be to me, it is still a commitment.
If you cannot put in the few required service hours each semester or if you are already involved in another organization, club, or sports team on campus that takes up most of your time, you shouldn’t feel left out for not being in a sorority or fraternity. You do you. I just hope that the reason you might not choose to get involved is not because you are closed-minded about the idea. Can’t knock it till you’ve tried it.
Greek life has definitely worked out for me. If I’m being honest, I almost gave up on it when I went through fall recruitment, but things worked out for the better in the end and I eventually found a place I belonged. Plus, I know I can always count on my fellow sisters for Instagram likes.
Jill Kazlow ([email protected]) is a sophomore intending to major in journalism.