There are many ways to get involved on campus at Pitt State. One way to do that is joining organizations like a fraternity or sorority.
There are some benefits to joining Greek life according to Fraternity and Sorority Program Coordinator Anna Stark.
“I think some of the best benefits of joining a fraternity or sorority… (is) that it really creates a foundation and a support system for your time in college,” Stark said. “So, I would say joining a fraternity or sorority is going beyond just joining a general student organization in those ways. We’re creating leadership opportunities, ways to empower not only yourself but those around you, really being involved and ingrained in what it means to be a college student and a Pitt State student.”
According to Piper Bourne, President of Alpha Sigma Alpha, there is a minimum GPA requirement that students need to meet in order to join the sorority.
“…We really pride ourselves on scholarship,” Bourne said. “We hold our members to a high standard. We have a high GPA that we want all of our members to achieve because that is what they’re here for first, is academics and schooling. Another thing that I really like that we do is we have a lot of members involved in campus. A lot of our members are in at least one or more other campus organizations. So, I think that’s really great… We just foster sisterhood and friendship… We’re able to help each other grow and we’re able to not only find ourselves but also find people that will help us in the future as well. So, that’s really something that I really love about it.”
In addition to events, fraternities and sororities are also involved in volunteer work.
“…We focus a lot on our sisterhood which we do a lot of events involving like other chapters and also within ourselves and we have to do a certain amount of community service hours,” said President of Alpha Gamma Delta Mallory Brajkovic said. “So, we try to go to the Lord’s Diner a lot and volunteer there because our philanthropy is fighting hungry. And so we do a big event every year called Mac and Cheese feed… in order to raise money and we donate that money to go towards fighting hunger… we pretty much just do a lot of events together and try to get involved in the community and be involved in Greek life in general.”
Like most organizations and events, there will be some changes this year due to COVID-19 concerns.
“So, all of our chapters have received guidance from not only the university but the nations organizations on best practices and things like that,” Stark said. “So, although their houses are not owned or operated by the university, they all will be providing plans for extra cleaning and usage and things like that… Just like every other student organization they’re required to provide information about their events and things like that. So, everything that’s required of a general student organization is also required of our fraternities and sororities.”
There are some policies and procedures already in place; however, there is still a lot to figure out.
“…I’m still trying to figure out what we’re gonna to do about meetings and of course philanthropies are still gonna be different, what we do, and how involved we’re gonna be with the community,” Bourne said. “We’re still trying to figure out how we’re gonna do that… (and stay) safe. We don’t want to have anywhere between 60 to 80 women in one close environment because obviously that’s not following guidelines. So, we’re just kind of trying to figure out how to social distance and all of that but still staying together and being there for each other.”
Brajkovic is also going to try to limit the number of people at meetings.
“…So, we’re actually gonna be doing a lot more things online and probably not really much, this semester at least, in person,” Brajkovic said. “I know I’m probably gonna try to do chapter meetings like in smaller group settings instead of the whole chapter in one area. Events are gonna… look a lot different this year, I think.”
According to Stark, students should try it out and see if it is something they like.
“I think particularly for our incoming students go in to really joining any organization with an open mind,” Stark said. “…I think that joining a fraternity or sorority is a unique experience and can be clouded by a lot of things that happen in the media and things like that. But joining a fraternity or sorority at Pitt State is different than joining a fraternity or sorority anywhere else. I would say our community is very strong and open and really strives to be a place where if you really want to and you’re going (in) with an open mind you can find a place that is right for you. So, if it’s something that you’re interested in even remotely give it a shot and if it ends up not being for you at least you tried. I think that a lot of our students just don’t give it a shot and later are like ‘oh I guess it’s different than what I thought it was like’ so I think that’s really important.”
For more information about fraternities and sororities, please visit pittstate.edu/fsl.