Care Bears Cares: Go Greek?
Dear Care Bear,
With the second semester of my freshman year coming to a close, all the talk among my friends is about rushing in the fall and I’m not sure what I think of it all. On one hand, the idea of being in a sorority sounds like a ton of fun, and I like the idea of being part of a group with rich tradition and history, but on the other hand, I’m hesitant about the idea of “paying for friends” and trying desperately to suck up to girls you just met so they’ll accept you. As much as being in a Greek organization looks like fun, I’m a bit skeptical of the morality of the process. I feel like buying into this system would be going against certain things I believe in. But at the same time, I’m afraid that if I choose not to be in a sorority, then I’ll have no social life. Help me!!
First let me reassure you that you are absolutely not alone in your ambivalence about the Greek system. As much as the culture is great fun and promotes many positive values such as community, sisterhood, and philanthropy, when it comes down to it, the recruitment process is, to be fair, a test to prove who’s good enough to be part of the club. I’m not trying to slam the Greek system or discourage you from rushing—I’m registered for fall rush myself! What I am saying is that you need to make your decision based on what you want to choose for your college experience. Many girls decide to rush primarily because they are afraid that they will not be part of Gettysburg’s social culture if they don’t. What I will suggest is that you make a list of the pros and cons of rushing and determine if it’s worth it for you. Choosing Greek life for the right reasons means doing it to enhance your college experience, not to define it. As great as it is to join a sorority and gain lifelong friends from the experience, it is important to make sure you are choosing your own friends and not letting your friends choose you. If you decide that you do want to rush, I would recommend keeping the perspective that you are looking for a group that you have things in common with, and not try to fit a mold that doesn’t suit you just so you’ll be accepted. And remember: There are many other great things to do on campus if you decide against Greek life.
If you’re dealing with a problem with classes, friends or anything else on campus, odds are someone else at Gettysburg is having a similar problem. So rather than confide in your parents or reliable best friend, why not publish your personal problems for all the world to see!? It’s like when you go up to your professor with a question, and he or she insists that you ask so the entire class can hear in case other students have the same question. My name is Caroline, and, hey!—I care! If you have a problem relating to school, friends, relationships, etc., go ahead and over-share. I will keep your identity a secret, and I might even be able to help! Email me your questions at email@example.com and I will answer a different question every Monday! Help me to help you. Let’s start over-sharing.