Greeks make their mark on campus life

While Miami is renowned for its Hispanic culture, there stands a perimeter of fraternity houses and sorority suites that surround the University of Miami campus, revealing an abundance of “Greek” life as well.

For many students, especially incoming freshman who have yet to discover the ins and outs of Miami, going Greek or at least rushing could prove to be an experience well worth their time.

Vice President of Recruitment Mike Johnston agrees. “Rushing is a great option. It’s a chance to break free of the pre-structured environment that high school often imposes on students and discover what’s available through UM’s Greek societies.”

Many believe that rushing can also be a smart undertaking. Students who rush get the opportunity to sample the social atmosphere of Greek life before making any serious commitments to it.

It also provides students with the opportunity to learn about each individual organization and the charities and events they represent.

“By going Greek, or at least rushing,” Johnson says, “you can basically plug yourself into a whole new life on campus.”

In many respects, this is very true.

Members of a Greek organization hold approximately 85 percent of the leadership positions on campus.

They plan, organize, and fashion the majority of on-campus events throughout the school year, as well as provide an easy-to-access social scene to counter UM’s academic life.

The breakdown of the Greek Recruitment is quite simple.

Fraternity Rush is the first and most informal stage of the process. It’s an obligation-free chance to visit and learn about Greek-society.

September 3rd will kick off the housing tour in which the fraternity houses and sorority suites throughout the campus will be open to visit and explore.

Each fraternity will answer any questions students may have about Greek life and give them a general idea of what to expect if you are to actually join.

After the meet and greet sessions are over, “Smokers” or specified-invite-only events take place.

During this period, participants meet each other on a more individual basis and try to get a feel for the individual organizations. Essentially, it’s the students’ chance to try on each fraternity or sorority and see which one fits best. These last about an hour and will be held on Sept. 9, 10 and 12.

Finally, on Sept. 13, each Greek organization will make a formal invitation to their candidates of choice in what is known as “bid day.” Those who choose to make it this far now have the choice as to whether or not Greek life is an endeavor worth taking.

“Greek life has given me a lot of experiences in life that I never would have had,” said Dave Hurley of Sigma Phi Epsilon. “Like any organization with a selective membership, there will be ups and downs, but through my personal experience I’ve made some really good friends.”

According to Johnston, the turnout of incoming “rushers” exceeded their expectations, signaling a growing membership in UM’s Greek life.

Recruitment is currently under way in the breezeway and will continue for the next few weeks.