I recently became a sister of Zeta Tau Alpha, but up until September when recruitment started, I had NO idea I would be in a sorority. A year ago if you would’ve asked me my opinion on sororities, it wouldn’t have been the best one. At my original college, there were less than 4,000 students and only 2 sororities, so I didn’t have an interest in greek life. When I transferred schools, I had to move around in student housing so many times that I didn’t even think about rushing. With upwards of 30,000 people, I felt like I didn’t have to. But life changed and friend groups moved around and I found myself picturing what it would be like to be in a sorority. This year’s recruitment came around, and although it was nontraditional to rush as a junior, I knew I would wonder “What if…?” if I didn’t rush and signed up.
Now that I’m in a sorority, I’m exploring some of the myths I’ve heard and debunking them for those who were in an unsure position like I was.
MYTH: If you’re in a sorority, you don’t hang out with anyone outside of Greek life.
THE TRUTH? Your circle just got so much bigger.
My friends gave me SO much crap about rushing and always made jokes like “Nice knowing you then” or “Don’t forget about us” …I was frustrated because I didn’t get why this time commitment was such a big deal. I compared my involvement in my sorority with a guy joining a club sports team. You have required meetings and events, you have your “team” and you wear your team’s clothes. Simple as that.
I found after rushing and being initiated that I haven’t lost any friends at all. I just have more people to hang out with! I have a much bigger circle and I know I always have someone to grab food with, study with, or talk to. I have friends in other sororities too, so you aren’t just stuck in your chapter – in fact, one of my closest friends on campus is in Alpha Delta Pi! If you’re worried about spending time with old friends, plan a weekly dinner “date” night with people outside of greek life to prove to them that you aren’t going to forget their friendships!
MYTH: Sororities are way too expensive & I can’t afford to be in one.
THE TRUTH? Your sorority works with you to make $$$ the least of your worries.
My biggest fear throughout recruitment was not being able to afford a sorority. The Department of Greek Life at my school did a perfect job of making sure each girl was 100% aware of expenses going into Greek life. There are payment plans, payment tracks, scholarships…you name it. If you truly want to be in a sorority, you can be. Talk to your Dept. of Greek Life about financial stuff if you’re worried about making a big commitment. And if you’re wondering how much it costs, I honestly can’t tell you. Each sorority is so different, and each sorority spends their money in different ways.
TIP: If you’re worried about blowing your budget in a sorority, don’t spend too much on the optional stuff
…like t shirts. There have been approximately 8000 opportunities *just this semester* so far to buy shirts. These shirts are from my sorority, other sororities and their events, fraternities and their events, collaborations with fraternities…the list goes on. Budget yourself to just one t-shirt a month, or maybe 4 t-shirts total in one semester. You can save SO much money this way.
MYTH: You’re in a sorority to party.
THE TRUTH? My chapter is ranked the highest for logged study hours at the library & we’re known for our high GPA.
Shocker, right? Sorority girls ACTUALLY study! We have hard majors! We pull all-nighters in the library! Some sororities might even have required study hours. Before becoming a member of Zeta Tau Alpha, I maybe went out and went to a party once a month. Now, I maybe go out once a month. Seriously. Nothing’s really changed over here, I’m still a grandma. In all seriousness, there ARE parties through Greek life. There are TONS of social events to go to. So the sorority girls you know might like to party, yes, but that’s not all we do. We are dedicated to our careers and our education, we empower other women and raise breast cancer awareness through our incredible philanthropy, and we would much rather spend nights in with pizza and netflix than nights out with boys and booze. It’s true.
So. Three sorority myths. Debunked.
I’ve learned so much in the little time I’ve been initiated. The most important thing I’ve learned is this: Greek life is encouraging and empowering. You’ll never meet a community like it! Give it a try no matter what, because the process might surprise you. And you might just end up loving it. I did.
Any questions? Ask away!