In many colleges across the country, rush week begins only a few weeks after classes start. For freshmen that are on the fence about rushing or not, that’s not a lot of time to make a decision about something you’ll have to commit to for the next four years. Instead of jumping in to rush week and getting sucked into Greek life, remember that sorority life isn’t necessary in order to be social.
- You can meet people through clubs related to your hobbies or major.
Sororities are time-consuming, so if you’re only going to pick an activity or two to join, something related to your major may be more valuable. Even though sororities can be a necessary resource for networking, extracurriculars that are actually geared to your specific interests may help you out more in the long run —plus you’ll be meeting people that, guaranteed, have the same interests as you.
- It’s extremely time consuming.
With weekly hour-long chapter meetings, study tables and weekend socials, the pressure to participate can be overwhelming. And not participating in these events can be met with criticism if you’d just rather go for a run or study alone.
- It’s expensive.
It starts with a pricey fee to rush, a $100 to $200 initiation fee and even more on outfits just for recruitment. And once you’re in, you’re stuck paying $1000 to $2000 per year even if you’re not living in your sorority house yet. This doesn’t even include money spent on big/little gifts, various t-shirts and possible fines. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather save my hard-earned cash for the bars, not on outfits to impress other girls.
- The possibility of hazing.
According to stophazing.org, 3 in 5 college students are subjected to hazing. Although this practice is illegal, for many sororities or fraternities, it’s a rite of passage. There’s a number of hazing stories on the internet, from something as small as chugging an unwanted beer or forcing pledges to strip down and circle parts of their body they want to lose weight. Um, I’d rather not.
- Living with a bunch of girls.
As a girl, we can all agree girls are annoying. We need boys in our life to fix our smoke detector or kill that spider crawling across the kitchen floor. Further, we need boys to give us logical advice when we’re sobbing over something because our hormones are out of whack. It’s one thing to live with one or two other girls, but 10 to 20? No thanks.
- Because they’re not actually your sisters.
And scrolling through Instagram pictures of your big, your little, your grandbig and your grandlittle, your twin, and your new “family” kind of makes me nauseous.
Many people can agree that sororities change people. Not just because they make friends that they spend more time with, but because sororities will teach you that sisterhood is number one over everything. If it’s the life you choose, then that’s fine, but keep in mind that you may be left believing in things that you wouldn’t have pre-rush.
- No drinking in the houses.
Almost every sorority house in the country bans alcohol in the house, but almost every fraternity house is free to host all the alcoholic parties they want. We all know this doesn’t keep girls from getting drunk on the weekends, it simply puts the alcohol dependence on fraternities. After a long day of school and work, we should be able to go to our home and unwind with a glass of wine.
If you’re feeling like you need to pay a hefty fee to fit in, you don’t. For some people, the sorority life is a good fit. But if you’re feeling like it’s something you need to do in order to make friends or fit in, think again. You will still get the “college experience,” as long as you put yourself out there and socialize. Now go blow that hard earned cash at the bars.
Featured image via screengrab
Typically I agree with most of the articles/posts on this site, this one however is not sitting well with me.
I completely agree that Sorority Life is not for everyone, and in no way should a woman ever feel pressured to do so, but I do not completely agree with the other points that you made.
1. There is no reason why you are not able to join a club or association that is related to your major as well as joining Greek Life. A combination of those will probably end up being the most beneficial for your life, yourself as a woman, and your future career. Networking can be done across all majors and with people from all walks of life, why should you limit yourself when you can be meeting other hardworking, career driven women and men in Greek Life, as well as others in your major.
2. Sorority Life is what you put into it. Is it time consuming? Yes. It is worth the time commitment? Very much so. Why is putting time and hard work into an organization a bad thing? When joining Greek Life you gain life long connections, as well as other life long career skills such as womanly character and professionalism. Most members of Greek Life respect when you need your “you” time such as going for a run or studying alone, and although events are required, school work comes first above all else.
3. It is expensive, which is another reason you are given a choice to join, and a choice on what to spend your money on.
4. Hazing. Hazing is a national problem that many colleges and universities are cracking down on. You mention your statistic, but did you know that it is not only Greek Life that participated in these activities? It is also sports teams and other large organizations that are found on campus. I was never put through hazing as my college and national organization has a very strong no tolerance policy, but for those who are, they have the option to leave. No one wants to be hazed, its disrespectful and harming both mentally and physically, but Greek Life is not the only place where you could find this.
5. As a sorority woman, some of my best friends are guys, and they do exactly what you mentioned in the fifth paragraph. They are there to help me when I need a guy’s perspective and my hormones are out of whack. They are there to defend me when my ex boyfriend says something offensive to me, and for anything else I could need them for, and I am there for them as well. Why does being a Greek woman prevent me from potentially having these friendships? The answer is simply that it doesn’t.
6. Let me ask you a question… Your close group of girlfriends, do you call yourselves sisters? Do you call other people who are not blood related to you your family? This is the same concept. Sisterhood is about creating bonds with people, and growing into women together. They are there during both the ups and downs of your life and some will remain doing so after graduation. These women become family, and are just like my biological sisters in every aspect except for blood.
7. This is the biggest one I do not understand. Are you the same woman that you are your first day of college freshman year? I know I am not. Although that is not due to “brainwashing”, it is due to growing up. It is natural in college to experiment, and find yourself. Have my sisters helped me to do this? Yes in ways that I can never fully thank them for, but I am not brainwashed because I know who I am now with their help.
8. The reason that alcohol is not allowed in sorority houses is because the values that most sororities cherish and stand for are to become strong women, who have good character, values and morals, leadership skills and motivation to do good. To do so there is a focus placed on academics, which is why sorority women are at college to begin with. Am I saying that sorority women don’t drink? No I am not naive to this subject, but why would alcohol not being allowed in your house be a reason to not join Greek Life and an organization that could truly enrich your life for the long run.
I respect your opinion with these points, but as a Sorority and Greek woman I also wanted to let you know where there are flaws in this perspective. Maybe at the school you attended Greek Life had a horrible reputation, or maybe you have been burned by Greek Life in the past, I do not know. But once again I am saying that no woman should ever feel pressured to join Greek Life, but no woman should try to be talked out of it either.
You can find your home in any on campus organization, but don’t brush away sorority life just for these reasons listed above, because they could end up holding you back.
As a member of the Greek community, I would like to point out a few things. You are a freshman, who has barely had the opportunity to even be apart of Greek life or see what we do. From media you have been exposed to, you have views that many of our parents would agree with. You have not seen the great things that Greeks do on campuses and in their communities. Your point about being apart of other groups is flawed on its own– more Greeks hold leadership positions in other on campus clubs and organizations than non-Greeks, and many Greek organizations require their members to be apart of other organizations as well. While I respect your opinion on not joining a sorority, I would suggest you do some research before you spew. Of all people, considering what your high school paper, advisor, and mentors were, you should understand that research is key.
Hi Sara, thanks for giving my article a read. While I am only a freshman, but I have had the opportunity to see and even participate in many Greek activities like philanthropy events and date parties. I did do my research – in fact, every point I made is indeed true – there is always a possibility or hazing, and Greek life is expensive – some people just choose to overlook these things because a sorority is the right fit for them.
I know that personally when I started my freshman year I didn’t want to join one, but I was worried that I wouldn’t “fit in” if I didn’t. This article is to show students that they shouldn’t feel like it’s something they need to do. Like I said, “for some people, the sorority life is a good fit. But if you’re feeling like it’s something you need to do in order to make friends or fit in, think again. You will still get the “college experience,” as long as you put yourself out there and socialize.” Thanks for taking the time to share your opinion!
To the comment above… this article isn’t attacking sororities, it’s clearly just stating how there are some cons to greek life. It says at the end that for some people it’s great, and for other’s it’s not a great fit. There’s no need to be defensive. I am a member of a sorority and this article made me laugh because it’s all true! I have friends that are not involved in greek life and they’re doing great without it. I personally think it’s fun, but I can laugh at the obvious cons and am not blind to them because I’m too obsessed with my letters to notice.
Your points were fine, but the “living w girls” thing was SEXIST. Thanks for implying girls are just crazy, blubbering babies who need guys to fix things for them.
Needing males to change the batteries in your smoke detector, squash spiders, or deal with your own personal hormonal problems is just pathetic, and yes, sexist to say that all women need this type of treatment. I can assure you that we don’t.