I have a bottomless pit of opinions when it comes to sororities -- which I will no doubt tackle over here at a later date, but I watched an interesting piece about the perception of sororities vs. some of the reality. Check it out here. (ABC News needs to start letting people embed video...)

You have the usual stereotype of a sorority girl, and then the fact that they are becoming more diverse, their GPA are high - in this case, higher than the school average, etc. It's short, but interesting to watch nonetheless.

Full disclosure, I'm in a sorority, though NOT AT ALL like the kind you see in the video. But I am not offended by any critiques; I have plenty of my own.

Also, note to NALFO and NPHC: I rather like calling them "Independents" rather than GDIs, what do you think??

I'm curious, what's everyone else's take on sororities?


At Sun Sep 14, 03:05:00 PM Habladora said...

I had a negative opinion of sororities before starting college, so I might not have given them a fair chance, but I have to say that my observations of my friends' experiences only deepened my distrust. Of course, the superficial judgments and stress of rushing stuck me as an extension of social worries into the adult years when most of us stop caring if someone else doesn't like the way we're dressed. Yet, I'm sure that there are sororities where the women aren't behaving that way - my 1st year roommate's sorority might simply have been a bad example.

The worst, however, was when one of my very close friend's sorority asked several of the sisters to depledge - apparently the sorority was getting a reputation of being a 'fat' sorority and so... well, you can guess the rest. My friend 'got to stay,' but considered quitting in protest. She didn't in the end though. For me, that cemented my dislike. Again, I'm sure they're not all like that - nonetheless, I distrust sororities in general.

On an unrelated note - is your sitemeter working? The 'upgraded platform' seems to have rendered mine useless.

At Sun Sep 14, 03:46:00 PM frau sally benz said...

I always find it interesting to hear stories of NPC sororities ("white" sororities) and local sororities. My sorority experience was so different.

It's unfortunate that young women are forced to go through some of the experiences you're mentioning. "Fat" sorority - things like that shouldn't matter. It's really quite sad.

The new sitemeter is having all kinds of issues. I tried logging in to set up my stuff, but it logged me out and now won't let me log back in. And, of course, I can't check my stats. Ugh!

At Sun Sep 14, 03:55:00 PM M├Ąchtige Maus said...

I have to admit to having a negative opinion of the sorority/fraternity system at colleges.

Put the hazing during rush season aside. At the college I attended, both systems managed to create massive stereotypes for themselves. The party frat, the geek sorority, the unpopular options for those who couldn't get into the popular options. None of it seemed worth it, especially when you add in the party scene. I think in my entire time at college I went to maybe four parties. I'm sure that the sororities and fraternities tried to do some good in the community, but near as I could tell the party reputation was generally more of the focus.

When I swam in college, we were actually discouraged from pledging. There were a few of my teammates who did anyway, but in doing so, they were not allowed to swim for that semester while pledging. I never saw the point to that. I was there for classes and swimming so never felt the need to partake in something that was going to make either suffer. Besides, the swim team quickly became my own family on campus giving me everything I ever needed.

At Mon Sep 15, 02:37:00 AM Kekla said...

The thing that makes me skeptical of sororities is the frenzied concept of Rush -- and, hello, it is labeled "rush" for a reason. You just know that many of the young women who hurry to join sororities in their first few weeks of school do so out of fear of not being able to find friends on their own. I find it pretty appalling that schools expect students to make such a drastic commitment before they've had a chance to adjust to college life as individuals. Right out of the gate, college women are thrust into a highly artificial meet-and-greet scenario that will result in rejection for some, acceptance for others, and permanent membership in a community that for better or worse will help define their futures.

Fortunately, I went to a school that did winter rush, and that was so much better for all of us. We had time to breathe, to meet sorority women and non-sorority women alike and see that both can exist with equal success (at least at my school). And because I already had a semester under my belt by then, even I, a pre-ordained "independent" considered going along with rush, just to see what it was about. I knew I wouldn't be sucked in unless I wanted to be, because I had already made some friends, and I had lived in college long enough to have confidence that I could survive it without purchased sisterhood. I didn't rush, in the end, but some of my new friends did. And we even stayed friends after they pledged.

At Mon Sep 15, 01:01:00 PM frau sally benz said...

Darn, no readers out there with positive sorority experiences?

My experience really wasn't so bad. Perhaps a fuller post is in order. As an intro: I pledged for a Latina sorority (pledging is worlds apart from rushing) and did enjoy being in a sorority. There are always things to gripe about, but overall, it helped grow a lot and I got to participate in community service projects that I cared about. I also got most of my grassroots-type training b/c of the responsibilities I had.

At Mon Sep 15, 03:17:00 PM Danny said...

You just know that many of the young women who hurry to join sororities in their first few weeks of school do so out of fear of not being able to find friends on their own.
Thats the tactic. To catch them while they're vulnerable and to get first crack at them (its alot easier to sway a rookie first year than a senior who knows their stuff).

Frankly I really didn't care for greek life. My opnion mainly came from the fact that at the first party at the beginning of my first semester the greeks came out and acted as if they were the center of the blasted universe. That one display of arrogance locked my opinion of greeks. I was perfectly able to form my own life long friendships (which are much more meaningfull because they are of my choosing) without having to pay money, deal with people I may not like, or strut as if I'm the baddest mofo around.

At Mon Sep 15, 10:19:00 PM Maxie said...

I was in an NPC sorority, but I'm not sure how "complete" my experience is because I only spent one year in school.

For the most part I really loved (and still do) my sorority. There were some great girls and I know if I had stayed longer I could have formed some amazing friendships.

I had a few bad experiences due to bad luck combined with my freshman stupidity. I got a really bad case of pneumonia when I was pledging which made life harder all around. Earlier in they year I had convinced my roommate and girl I grew up with to pledge the same sorority which was kind of overkill. It just got to a point where I was so tired from being sick and so annoying with being around my roommate 24/7 that I didn't want to go to any functions.

If I had it to do all over again I'd love to pledge and do it right. Even though I left college early I do like the fact that I can go back anytime and am always welcome in the house.


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