It’s kind of an unavoidable question. Every girl ponders it in the months leading up to college: some have known their whole lives that they wanted to join a sorority, while others come in completely averse to going Greek. I always fell into the second category—I never thought I would rush. Nothing about the stereotypical sorority girl lifestyle appealed to me: I had no desire to live in a house full of vapid, squealing girls, and I wasn’t attracted to the idea of singing obnoxiously perky songs and flipping my hair to the point of migraine. Above all, I didn’t want to be perceived (by both my peers and professors) as someone who didn’t care about academics and preferred to spend her time partying. And then, over the summer, in a rare moment of open-mindedness, I decided to try it with my friend. Why not at least go through Rush and see what it was like? My friend and I filled out the ridiculously intensive application together (I swear my college applications asked me less grueling questions) and BAM. That was it. I came to school, went through Rush, joined a house, and stuck with it.
It’s now halfway through the first semester, and I can tell you this: I’m happy being in my house. I would never have expected to actually be involved in the Greek system at this point (even after Bid Night, I still doubted I’d stay in it for too long— it just didn’t seem like it was my thing). But the more I gave it a chance, the more I discovered I liked it. The thing is, you never know who you’re going to end up connecting with; you have no idea how well you can actually be matched to a house. I can’t tell you that I’m your classic “I didn’t wanna rush but I did and now I’m in love with the Greek system and it’s my life” story— but it is, on the whole, a good experience for me. I’ve made some amazing friends and mentors, and it has enhanced my social life thus far.
Is it necessary go Greek in order to have fun? Absolutely not. I have plenty of friends who are more than happy with being non-Greek, and not having to deal with a lot of the downsides of sorority life (frequent and sometimes banal meetings, annoying mandatory activities, etc). But, anyone who tells you that Greek life isn’t big at USC is lying. One glance around campus will prove that to you— it’s hard to miss the sorority girls walking around proudly flashing their lettered totes, or wearing other (often obnoxiously bright and loud) Greek gear.
It’s really up to you to decide if you want to enter that social realm or not. You can have a great social experience and not be in a sorority; either way, your social life at USC shouldn’t be contingent upon being in a house. Although I’ll often spend time going out with my sorority friends to Greek events, I try to strike a balance between those outings and the ones I have with my non-Greek friends. I think it’s critical, especially as a freshman, to not limit yourself to just one group of people— there’s so much to be gained by befriending a wide variety of people. All I can say is, whether or not you decide to go Greek, make sure to open yourself up to meeting as many new people as you can in your first year of college—it could be someone from class, your dorm, or your house; you never know who’s going to end up becoming your closest friend down the line, so don’t rule them out just because they’re Greek or not Greek.