To join or to not join? That truly is the question…
There are a lot of things to consider before taking the plunge on pledging during your college years. If you go by how Hollywood portrays the social aspects of Greek Life, then you’re probably steering towards a flat out “no” or a “where do I sign up” attitude. The question is, how do you know if pledging is right for you or not? Just like everything else in life – you research it!
Just like everything in life, there are numerous versions of what you’ll find out as a result of your “research.” In an effort to keep you on track and avoid hopping from one website to another, I’ve boiled it down for you in three universally known terms – THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE UGLY!
Fraternities and Sororities offer a sense of belonging. Having a community of people to support you while you’re on your own for the first few years is a pretty great way to keep your head in the game. Plus, you’ll meet lots of people and participate in activities you probably wouldn’t have considered doing on your own. Not only will you learn leadership, time management, and problem solving skills, they’ll also offer a number of resources you can utilize academically and professionally. A few other advantages are:
- Great parties!
- Lot’s of friends!
- Social connections!
The downside to pledging is the commitment. Similar to a part time job, you’re required to commit at least 10-15 hours a week to your brothers or sisters in order to pass. If your time is limited or you’re in a serious relationship, living within a sorority or fraternity can put a damper on things. A few other disadvantages are:
- Hazing period – you’ve got to prove you’re committed.
- Lack of sleep due to an increase of activities and social involvement.
- You may gain a bit of weight – those midnight fast food runs will catch up to you.
Joining a fraternity or a sorority generally requires some sort of financial obligation. Much like your college tuition where payment is “due,” so are the fees for your social activities within the club. Don’t misconstrue pledging by paying to have friends. Your fee’s go to the social activities that your fraternity or sorority club puts together or involves themselves in within the local community. Either way, if you’re on a strict budget as it is, then perhaps pledging isn’t right for you.
- You’re expected to help set up social events as well as participate in them.
- You may have a hard time keeping in touch with buddies outside of your frat/sorority club.
- Since you’re expected to participate in activities, you’ll also be expected to spend more as a result.
Whether you’re joining to participate in social functions, for the professional connections, to involve yourself in community services or to strive for an academic or honorary title – overall, the commitment is probably worth your while. Regardless of how they’re perceived, fraternities and sororities are all about surrounding yourself with people that have similar views and values as you. If this sounds like you, have fun and enjoy!