Greek life is not as bad you might think

This is in response to a column published by Mr. Matt Sussman that ran in yesterday’s issue of The BG News. In the column, “Greek Life is not really Greek,” Mr. Sussman uses several outmoded clichés to paint an elitist and slanted picture of the Greek Community. Hopefully you, the educated reader, can see past these inapt comparisons and see the reason of the argument, not the blind emotion.

Greek letters: what do they mean? Admittedly, these symbols are taken from an archaic alphabet no longer used. Meaningless? Not quite. To each individual organization, these letters hold a special meaning that defines the standard by which a member should live; the ideal the should strive to achieve. To a member of the Greek Community, their letters are as important to them as are their unique values.

Greek letter societies where founded at academic institutions in the mid-1800’s to promote brotherhood and scholarship above what was regulated by the school, and there has been very little change in the aims of these groups.

Another “point” that Mr. Sussman makes is the Greek system seems to hold itself in higher regard than the student populace. To quote, “…the vibe I receive from most of these “prestigious organizations” is that they are somehow more important than other clubs,” and “…silly gibberish on your sweatshirt doesn’t make you important.” Is it wrong to have pride in one’s involvements? If so, then wouldn’t anyone wearing a BGSU sweatshirt be as guilty?

You’re right, Mr. Sussman, the letters on my sweatshirt make me no more important than the next student, but I must say that what my organization has accomplished as a collective (and under the guidance of what our letters stand for) makes me proud enough to show I’m a part of such an outstanding group.

In essence, that’s what Greek Life is about. Brothers and sisters, united in a common cause, proving that the effectiveness of a whole is far greater than the sum of its parts. For example, Greeks on this campus alone raised more that $100,000 for various charities last spring alone, along with contributing over 20,000 hours of community service.

Typically, Greeks are students who are eager to make a difference in the community. Most of us are involved in at least one organization outside of our fraternity or sorority. Much of the top campus leadership, both student and administrative, are members of a Greek organization.

The Animal House-era stereotypes of “fraternities full of nerds” and “overweight sororities” are kept alive by a dying contingent of ill-informed individuals who take face value over fact. We encourage all students, interested in joining or not, to come out to meet us and see what Greek life is really about.

Derek Cohen

Tracy LaHote

Ryan Kreisher

Paris Tyler