As the school year looms ahead, so does sorority recruitment for a lot of us. There are plenty of articles on why you should join a sorority, how to make the best impression during rush, and even what to wear. But these just sort of scratch the surface of what its really like to be in srat life. So here we have it – I’ve consolidated experiences and advice from friends in Greek life so you can get the REAL inside scoop. So whether you know you’re going to rush, or still on the fence, I present to you: the good, the bad, and the ugly of being in a sorority.
Friends! Duh, this is the whole point of joining a sorority. As much as you and I do not want to admit it, college is intimidating. For me, I didn’t know a single person in my freshman class, so going through rush and getting into a sorority with 60 other girls was an awesome bonding experience and a huge relief. Your pledge class usually consists of women with similar characteristics and values as you, which makes getting to know them easy and fun. And this isn’t just me – everyone else I asked came to the same conclusion. Everyone’s best friends in college came from their sorority. (That being said, you can obviously make friends other ways and in different places, being in Greek life just makes it a little easier).
Social life. Along with meeting some amazing people, you get to do everything with them. From mixers with fraternities to fro-yo runs, the sorority promotes bonding by planning most of your social calendar. It’s stress-free, you meet more people, make connections, network, and have a dope time while doing so.
Food. So this is not the same at every college, but in some sororities, meals might be provided. For me, this is hand’s down best reason to join a sorority (besides friends, obviously). It’s usually of much better quality than dining hall food (😷), and way easier than cooking meals for yourself.
THE BAD (AND SOMETIMES, THE UGLY)
Cost. Again, this depends on the specific sorority, but we all have to pay our dues. These can get pretty pricey, especially if you have to pay for food. We’re talking upwards of thousands of dollars…on top of tuition and sometimes even housing. But most people say that the benefits outweigh the costs for the srat experience, and I have to agree. I work to pay for my sorority, but honestly the food, friends, and fun make it totally worth it. Of course, it depends on you or your family’s financial sitch – so it’s definitely something to consider.
Isolation. When you’re doing everything with one group of people and the objective is to create bonds between them, naturally people not included in that will be neglected. Many sororities claim that it’s easy to make friends with girls in other houses and outside of Greek life. But, unless you’re deliberately making time to meet and hang out with outside people, that’s exactly what they will become: outsiders. However, this doesn’t mean that it’s impossible! One of my best friends is in our so-called “rival” sorority, and its so refreshing to have someone to laugh with about the frivolities of Greek life and do things without the same people all the time. But, we did have to work to maintain our friendship during college and not to grow apart.
Stereotypes. Being in a sorority comes with having the labels of your typical sorority girl. Some people will think you’re superficial, dumb, materialistic, vapid, promiscuous, self-absorbed, anti-feminist, cult members… the list of negative stereotypes goes on. Obviously sorority members aren’t always like this, in fact I’d say it’s pretty rare for any of these stereotypes to be true. Look, if someone is judging you solely based on this one institution you are apart of without considering you as a multi-faceted, unique individual, that is unfair and that person is an a**hole. Don’t waste your precious time on them.
Hierarchy. As in, individually in your sorority and in your school’s Greek system as a whole. Executive committees exist to install and implement order so that the sorority can actually run effectively and doesn’t turn into Neighbors 2. But, those in executive positions can let this go to their head and become dictator-like, and its hard to oppose these people or make your opinion heard. Luckily, the whole sorority votes on these positions once a year, so there is opportunity for new (better) leadership.
Headed to college? Download the Hey! VINA app here, to make some new friends (who are not just in your sorority)!