Greek Life: Is It For You?

ACillo.IsGreekLifeReallyForYouPenn State is a great place for those with all kinds of interests (is there really a club exclusively for people with the name ‘Bob’? We don’t doubt it) and let’s face it—everyone wants to identify with a group they can call family away from home.

Well, if you’ve spent any more than two minutes on this campus you’d have already noticed probably ten people wearing Greek letters on their shirts. It turns out Penn State has a really prominent Greek life that consumes the lives of over 20% of Penn State’s population. Nationally recognized, these fraternities and sororities are philanthropic and at times service-oriented, but also incredibly social.

On the fence about rushing this year? Let us give you the run-down on some reasons why and why not going Greek is for you.

Why

Philanthropy: We said before that Greek life is philanthropic. Each fraternity and sorority have a charity or an organization they focus on helping through activities like bake sales, awareness activities, or the selling of any other items connected to the organization.

Family: You can find the family you’re looking for if you are lucky enough to be placed in the right one. Greek life is a great way to find a close-knit group of people who complement you well and with whom you can feel at home.

Fun: Greek life is no doubt a carousel of exciting events. Greek sing, Greek week and homecoming are just a few, but the list goes on. Socials are also something to look forward to if you want to meet other Greeks.

Future Opportunities: Greeks are all over the nation, and being in Greek life can open up a lot of doors for you if you stay on your game and be the best you can be. Getting involved in leadership positions within your Greek organization will heighten your chances of really impressing future employers.

Why Not

Potential Distraction: Though Greek life can be really fun, it can also be a way to forget about your number one priority: school work. Rushing is just the beginning—the pledging semester is guaranteed to be one of endless responsibilities and expectations within the group. If you haven’t had too much experience balancing school with a demanding organization, you might drown.

Not Your Style: It is very possible that the Greek org you were taken into isn’t exactly your fit. Rush is really crazy (especially Fall rush) and you don’t have a lot of time to get to know each group until you’re done running around to a dozen different groups in one day.

Going Out? Nah: Everyone has a different level of desire to want to go out on the weekends (or weekdays). If you’re not the kind of person who likes that sort of thing, or you have other ideas of how you want to spend your nights, you might feel conflicted between staying in and going out.

Non-Greek Friends: This doesn’t always happen, but sometimes getting caught up in a Greek org can make you forget about what it was like before you were Greek. You may not be as available to spend time with your non-Greek friends as you did before.

Greek life is a huge commitment and you get what you put in. It can be a great opportunity, but it is not for everyone. And, it doesn’t always work out. You just have to go with your gut and be true to yourself.

Photo by Audrey Cillo

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