I'm An FSU Student And I Agree Greek Life Needed To Be Shut Down

I'm An FSU Student And I Agree Greek Life Needed To Be Shut Down

These organizations need to take a look at the organization they represent and why they wanted to be a part of it in the first place.

On the afternoon of November 6, shockwaves were sent through the campus of Florida State University by word of mouth and social media as President John Thrasher announced that Greek Life at FSU had been shut down.

First off, I am not affiliated with Greek life and I think that’s important. It is important because it doesn’t matter. I am a student at FSU. I am a part of a diverse community of Greek and non-Greek students and my heart hurts.

A student is dead.

A student has died tragically, and his family has no real closure. Only a few people truly know what happened to him and it will probably stay that way.

A member of the FSU community has died and we grieved for what seemed like a minuscule amount of time.

In the same conversation — or even the same breath — I would hear concern about what fraternities were still having events and what this would mean for the future of Greek life.

I don’t hate Greek life. I have no animosity towards it. I have considered it for myself, something hard not to do at a school like FSU, but ultimately found that it wasn’t for me. I understand the values that each organization is built on. I get the life-long connections that are formed and the friendships that were made that otherwise probably wouldn’t have happened.

But I’m also not dumb.

I know that all that aside, the primary reason for these organizations is to have fun and to party. Anyone who disagrees is tragically misinformed.

I think it works out well in theory. An organization dedicated to brotherhood and sisterhood and service and leadership and academics sounds good on paper. But it takes every member believing in those values and principles and actively working to incorporate them into their community. While those ideals may be a by-product of these organizations they are by no means the main goal.

Brotherhood and sisterhood, and ultimately true friendship, gets put on the backburner.

I think this ban is much needed. These organizations need to take a look at the organization they represent and why they wanted to be a part of it in the first place. It will give much needed time to reflect. To evaluate. To see if these organizations are truly working to hold up the values that they ascribe to in all they do. To create environments that foster learning, leadership, friendship.

In a friendship, you look out for each other. You protect those who wouldn’t otherwise be able to protect themselves. You have the backs of your peers making difficult chokes and support them. You stand up for what’s right. You don’t abandon. You don’t give in to the bystander effect. If you claim to hold someone dear then you would make every effort to show that.

None of us are exempt.

We all need to work continually to do these things. If we all did, if we all tried a little harder, maybe we could prevent just one less tragedy from happening, and that itself would be worth it.

Please, if you ever feel like you need to talk to someone or you are going through something that you can’t get through alone—reach out. Talk to a friend, a mentor, a teacher, call a hotline, schedule a counseling appointment.

We are one FSU.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram

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Sorry Not Sorry, My Parents Paid For My Coachella Trip

No haters are going to bring me down.

With Coachella officially over, lives can go back to normal and we can all relive Beyonce’s performance online for years to come. Or, if you were like me and actually there, you can replay the experience in your mind for the rest of your life, holding dear to the memories of an epic weekend and a cultural experience like no other on the planet.

And I want to be clear about the Beyonce show: it really was that good.

But with any big event beloved by many, there will always be the haters on the other side. The #nochella’s, the haters of all things ‘Chella fashion. And let me just say this, the flower headbands aren’t cultural appropriation, they’re simply items of clothing used to express the stylistic tendency of a fashion-forward event.

Because yes, the music, and sure, the art, but so much of what Coachella is, really, is about the fashion and what you and your friends are wearing. It's supposed to be fun, not political! Anyway, back to the main point of this.

One of the biggest things people love to hate on about Coachella is the fact that many of the attendees have their tickets bought for them by their parents.

Sorry? It’s not my fault that my parents have enough money to buy their daughter and her friends the gift of going to one of the most amazing melting pots of all things weird and beautiful. It’s not my fault about your life, and it’s none of your business about mine.

All my life, I’ve dealt with people commenting on me, mostly liking, but there are always a few that seem upset about the way I live my life.

One time, I was riding my dolphin out in Turks and Cacaos, (“riding” is the act of holding onto their fin as they swim and you sort of glide next to them. It’s a beautiful, transformative experience between human and animal and I really think, when I looked in my dolphin’s eye, that we made a connection that will last forever) and someone I knew threw shade my way for getting to do it.

Don’t make me be the bad guy.

I felt shame for years after my 16th birthday, where my parents got me an Escalade. People at school made fun of me (especially after I drove into a ditch...oops!) and said I didn’t deserve the things I got in life.

I can think of a lot of people who probably don't deserve the things in life that they get, but you don't hear me hating on them (that's why we vote, people). Well, I’m sick of being made to feel guilty about the luxuries I’m given, because they’ve made me who I am, and I love me.

I’m a good person.

I’m not going to let the Coachella haters bring me down anymore. Did my parents buy my ticket and VIP housing? Yes. Am I sorry about that? Absolutely not.

Sorry, not sorry!

Cover Image Credit: Kaycie Allen

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Being A Leader In My Sorority Has Prepared Me For Life After College

If I want the rainbow, I have to deal with the rain.

Throughout my high school career, I was always involved in as many activities and clubs that I could possibly handle at once. Being really involved helped me adapt easier and keep me on my feet at all times.

When it was time to move to Kentucky where I knew a maximum of five people out of over 20,000 on campus, I knew that I had to get involved. In my opinion, there was no better way to start my freshman year of college off than registering for formal recruitment.

After a long and stressful week, I was lucky enough to end up where I’m supposed to be.

Since my first year as a new member of Tri Delta, I have been surrounded by courageous, committed and confident leaders. After two years of getting to know people and get comfortable, I was offered the position of Vice President of Finance.

I’m not going to lie, I was completely shocked at first. I have literally zero background in finance and I hate math and working with numbers. On top of that, accepting this position would mean that I would serve on the standards committee (if you know, you know).

For those of you who are not in Greek life, standards is the group of people that make executive decisions for the chapter. So essentially, it’s a lot of responsibility. As someone who has never held that big of a position before along with the fact that I have no previous financial background, I was hesitant to accept.

After going back and forth contemplating what I should do, I ended up accepting. Yeah, I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but I also really love my chapter and felt that having this position fall into my lap was meant to happen.

Here I am, five months in. I’m definitely a different person than I was at the start back in November. Dealing with all of the money for a chapter of 280 girls and managing a budget of about $800,000 really does something to you. I think I had my first “oh shit” moment after the first week but I’ve definitely gotten the hang of things and have learned so much.

Being a leader has involved dealing with the good, the bad and the oh so ugly. Like I said, my chapter has about 280 girls in it. As much as I’d like to say that everything is always sunshine and rainbows, it’s not.

When you’re dealing with that many people there’s something new every week.

If there’s any valuable lesson that I’ve learned from this experience, it’s that I will never be able to please everybody. This is something that I still struggle to accept sometimes simply because I’m the type of person who tries really hard to make everyone happy.

It’s difficult to sit back and listen to people say negative things about standards and the way we handle certain things as a group because I know deep down that every decision we make is done with the best interest of the chapter in mind.

When people come into the room amped up about something, they often forget that we are human beings too. We have feelings and spend lots of late nights talking through situations to make sure that we are truly doing what’s best.

A lot of consideration goes into each decision that is made. But no matter if we spend two minutes or two hours talking through something, nothing we do will ever make all 280 people happy with it.

With that being said, I’ve also learned that you can’t let the negative words of a few speak louder than the positive words of the majority. I have dedicated way too much of myself to this chapter to let a few rude comments consume me.

So many other members tell me on a daily basis that we’re doing such a great job. So why brush those compliments off but focus on the negative ones from two or three people, which at the end of the day mean literally nothing???

When people get upset about something they always look for someone to blame, which nine times out of ten ends up being those of us on standards. I used to get really pissed off and bothered by it, but at this point, I honestly just don’t care anymore.

I’m slowly but surely learning how to focus my energy on the things that matter most in my life, and negativity is not one of them.

Now I don’t want people to think that everything I just described is all that sorority life is, because it most certainly is not.

The positives definitely outweigh the negatives. I could go on about all of the amazing things that I have accomplished and participated in because of my membership in Tri Delta, but that's something for another time.

What I’ve taken away from my five months of being a leader in my sorority are lessons that I will carry with me after I graduate and start pursuing my professional career. The same things I had to work through as a member of standards are the same things that managers have to work through in the workplace.

If being a successful leader means I have to take some backlash every now and then, I’m okay with that.

If I want the rainbow, I have to deal with the rain.

Cover Image Credit: Karli Haubenreiser

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