Monday, September 9, 2013

Five Reasons to Go Greek

As millions of students begin their college careers, I am enviously remembering some of the most fun and life-shaping years of my life. Part of what made my college experience so memorable--both on and off campus--was becoming a member of Alpha Gamma Delta. I hadn't intended to join a sorority but after meeting some members and finding out what the organization is all about, I was all in.

Every chapter of a sorority has a different personality and purpose on its campus. I encourage any coed to get to know the women in sororities on their campus and consider membership for many reasons.

Forget all the Animal House ideas you may have about sororities and fraternities. Members of National Panhellenic Conference or Interfraterity Conference organizations are held to academic standards that, when unmet, can limit participation in the "fun" activities or even cause membership suspension. The chapter as a whole must meet an average grade point average. Our chapter supported academic growth by providing study hours and awards. I was even given a scholarship based in part on my scholastic success.

Most sororities are connected to a cause, providing members opportunities to be involved with philanthropic fundraising or activities. While bettering yourself, don't forget about others. Represent a cause and live with a purpose.

Let's not forget why you are in college to begin with. Imagine upon graduation you automatically have a network of thousands of people connected to the same organization. For years, you met the same standards as these folks and worked for the same philanthropic cause. A network of alumni connections can help you get a foot in the door or find mentors in your field.

For all the fun that college brings, it can be stressful. Every fast-paced day can bring critical deadlines and important tests. There will also be new sources of stress from relationships, work and living away from home. Your sorority sisters will understand these challenges and help you cope.

Don't miss the opportunity to be a part of something great. The women who founded Greek organizations were leaders and who paved the way for many successful women. Why not join them?