Before entering college, I knew I wanted to become a member of a Greek organization. After all, my parents were in Greek Life, and I had seen all of the totally accurate movies from the early 2000s. You know, the ones where everyone parties basically every night, participate in some friendly competitions against one another during Greek Week and experiences a spotlight that only members could find themselves basking in. While some of this is true, depending on the university you decide to enroll at, the one thing that has stuck out to me the most is that the competition is not always friendly and, to be honest, verges on high school ideals.
I was lucky enough to be given a bid at the house that I wanted most of all throughout recruitment. That is the best part about participating in sorority recruitment early — you rarely have to base your opinions about chapters on the foundation of others. Quickly after bid day, I came to find that my sorority was one that would be considered a "top house." Whatever that meant.
Supposedly, Greek chapters on college campuses are categorized by levels. What exactly goes into determining a top from a bottom house? You probably guessed it! Absolutely nothing of substance: looks, social circle, and partying. This is not to say that I am not proud to be in my sorority, but I would never compare the status of my chapter to one that is considered as "lower" because it doesn't matter — and it never will.
I chose my sorority based on how much I could see myself enjoying the atmosphere, people, philanthropy, and qualities the chapter upholds.
And, this is something I would recommend to anyone who is considering going through recruitment.
It is easy to feel pride in the chapter that you are a member of when you are considered as one of the most popular. For a little bit, I fell into this trap of confusing pride with cockiness, all the while, the individuals who I thought would be jealous never ended up caring what house I was a part of. Instead, they continued to fall in love with the chapter that they chose from the beginning. It is of utmost importance to remember that everyone will find the chapter that they fit in with, find a passion for, and are proud of. The individuals that have done this have been some of the kindest and most humble. In addition, they also have raised and supported their philanthropies with a drive that I could rarely ever mirror. Most (if not all) of the people I have met outside of my sorority within Greek Life, I consider friends no matter what chapter they are associated with and would not trade our friendship for the world.
It is time for all of us to realize that ranking individuals by where they decide they are most comfortable, where they enjoy their time the most, and where they find their "home away from home" has absolutely nothing to do with the person that they are. We all entered college as a confused freshman learning something new every day and finding that being on your own for the first time makes us more vulnerable to believe the opinions of others. I ask that if you are an incoming freshman, trust in who you are and how proud you would be of yourself after the four-year ride. Also, I ask that if you are the individual with the opinions for freshmen to listen to, make the attention that you receive worth it.
Support everyone, no matter what, and mean it.
Being a member of Greek Life is like a family. We all support one another throughout the various philanthropic events, enjoy each other's company during social get-togethers, and have a sense of comfort knowing that once we graduate as members, we will always be members. Not to mention, it is quite the conversation starter. Never let an organization fool you into believing that you are less than a group of others, or for that matter, better. There is not a single idea of importance or relevance that proves you are. So, enjoy your time in Greek Life after earning your bid because you deserve it!