to rush or not to rush? that is the question

Posted : August 3, 2003
Last Updated : June 10, 2015

to rush or not to rush? that is the question

For some people, joining a fraternity or a sorority is the right decision. Others may feel like they wouldn't have time or that it's just not their scene. It is completely up to you to decide if you want to be part of a Greek family or not, but here are a few questions to think about to help you make a decision.

Do you want to enlarge your social crowd? The Greek system is a great way to meet new people and make friendships that can last a lifetime. If you are going to a school where none of your friends are going, then you may want to consider joining a sorority or fraternity. Even if you and your high school friends are going to the same college, you may want to expand your inner circle in order to obtain new perspectives. However, if you feel you can meet people without the help of a club, then you may be content to bypass the Greek life altogether.

Do you want to develop leadership skills? Fraternities and sororities can help strengthen member's teamwork, time management, motivation, public speaking and organization skills. Greeks are also highly involved in leadership positions on various campuses. This may be a plus for you to join a sorority or fraternity but keep in mind that you can also develop leadership skills through other college organizations, such as student government or key club.

How much free time do you want? At some schools, the Greek life can be very time consuming, almost a lifestyle, while at other schools, it can be just another extracurricular activity. If you are the kind of person who doesn't like to give up copious free time, then going Greek may not be for you. On the other hand, if you thrive off of a busy schedule, then you may want to consider rushing. Just remember that by joining a fraternity or sorority, you are making a commitment to participate in their activities, such as community service and social activities.

Can you afford it? If you decide to join a sorority or fraternity, you will have to pay dues. Annual membership dues vary depending on where you go to school and which sorority or fraternity you join. Membership dues can range from $100 to $1,000 per semester. If you decide to rush, make sure you ask questions about how much dues will be. Some fraternities or sororities may even be able to sponsor you if you decide that you can't afford to join.

Greek life is not for everyone. What some students view as advantages of going Greek, others view as disadvantages. Keep in mind that you do not have to be a freshman to rush a sorority or fraternity. Many students wait until they are sophomores or juniors before they rush. If you are still unsure about whether or not you want to join, there is no harm in rushing a fraternity or sorority to find out more information. Just be sure to take your time checking out your options and making your decision.

Greek Terms Defined

  • Active – A person who has been initiated into a Greek organization.
  • Bid – An invitation to join a fraternity or sorority.
  • Dues – Money paid to a sorority or fraternity to cover expenses, such as socials, insurance, leadership programs, and member recruitment.
  • Initiation – Ceremony during which new members take their vows for full membership into the chapter.
  • Legacy – A student whose parent, grandparent, or sibling is a member of a particular fraternity or sorority.
  • Panhellenic – The governing body of sororities.
  • Philanthropy – Community service.
  • Pledge – Name given to new members after an initiation program but before they become full members.
  • Rush – Membership recruitment. Offers a time for potential members to ask questions and get to know other members.
  • Swap/Mixer – A theme party between a sorority and a fraternity.

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