College can be a really fun part of your life. However, if you don’t know anybody it can also be really lonely. For the first time in your life you are truly on your own and are in a pretty new social network. One of the biggest parts of college living is deciding whether or not you want to join a fraternity or sorority.
Fraternities are so popular they have even been featured in popular movies such as Animal House and Old School. They do have quite the reputation, some more than others, but there can be advantages and disadvantages to both, here are a few.
The most obvious advantage is that you have an instant supply of friends to choose from. Many people form long lasting friendships from their Greek college days. You would often be expected to support the school by attending sporting events other campus activities.
Most fraternities/sororities are paired with each other, so you would have an instant dating pool to choose from as well. Another advantage of the system is that when you graduate you have a large group of people to network with for job hunting.
In this day and age, with the economy still struggling to recover and good jobs hard to find, this can be a huge bonus to you.
Fraternities and sororities also emphasize giving back to the community and helping those in need and are involved in numerous on campus activities. Lastly, for schools that are in small towns or out-of-the-way places the Greek system is one of the only ways to get involved. Oh, and you will also get a lot of free shirts to wear.
Let’s be honest here though, the Greek system is mainly known for their drinking and partying (see disadvantages as well). They are famous for their mixers, parties and Spring Break getaways, which you may or may not want to be associated with.
One, you have to pay dues to the fraternity or sorority you join. Some of them are cheaper than others but some very elite ones can cost you a lot. This is in addition to the already high college costs, so you will have to decide if it is worth it. Another disadvantage is that you have to go through hazing when you are initiated.
While most try not to go far with it there have been horrible stories of hazing that goes too far and people being injured or hospitalized. Oh, and don’t forget the drinking and partying again.
Lastly, you will probably be stereotyped if you join one. The friendships can be superficial and shallow and you can be seen as just a party animal. Often people say joining the Greek system is the equivalent to buying your friends.
People who are independent, free spirited or artistic tend to avoid joining them and often even look down on them.
It’s not for everyone, but some people really enjoyed their time in a fraternity/sorority while others are glad they avoided the whole thing altogether. Of course you could just take it easy and avoid the Greek system altogether and attend an online college. Doing is also a great way to save on tuition.
Aiden Jefferson writes about college education. Check www.trident.edu to earn your online accredited online degree.
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