To pledge, or not to pledge

At many universities, the question is unavoidable. If your friends and fellow students are joining fraternities and sororities, you might reach a point where you too have to decide if you want to join in. To that end, here are the pros and cons of Greek life:

The pros:

1. Social benefit

Developing a steady social life and strong friendships is an inherent part of Greek life. In addition to your own brothers or sisters, you’ll meet and converse with members of other fraternities and sororities at mixers and other social events.

2. Professional benefit

The connections made in Greek life are not necessarily limited to current members. Since you have entered a national brotherhood or sisterhood, you develop a social tie to anyone who has ever been in your fraternity or sorority throughout the U.S. This can serve as a great foot in the door when searching for a job.

The cons:

1. Time commitment

From initial pledging requirements to the various events that are held by your potential frat or sorority, there is a substantial time commitment to pledging. If you love your frat/sorority, this shouldn’t be a problem, but if you hope to vastly diversify your social life, you might want to reconsider pledging.

2. Possibility of hazing

Hazing is the ritualistic initiation of new members. The rituals are sometimes unpleasant.  Although it is against school code and not every fraternity/sorority does it, many continue to haze. If you are worried about hazing but still want to join a fraternity or sorority, do some research and try to figure out if the particular brotherhood or sisterhood you are interested in participates in hazing.

Although Greek life can be an amazing social entry point to a school and possibly even a future career, it is not for everyone. There are many other ways to diversify your social life and plenty of other students who are seeking friendships outside the world of Greek life. In the end the decision should be based on your personal preferences, interests and goals.

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