In the media, Greek life is portrayed very differently than it is here at VCU. Being a smaller Greek life school has its benefits when it comes to this. It is truly a tight-knit community where I have been lucky enough to find my best friends and place here on campus.
Having a smaller Greek community on campus also aids in less toxicity and more Panhellenic love between organizations. It feels that VCU doesn’t feed into the rankings that many other big schools use either; it feels more that we are on a level playing field and just exist in a way.
I decided to join Greek life in the spring of last year. I had just transferred to VCU and had very few friends at the university going into it. I had also just endured a great deal of trauma and felt very alone and hopeless; I truly needed a solid community to lift me out of my funk.
This being said, I wanted to be in a sorority to find a group of girls to love and support me no matter what, and I have found exactly that! When I went through formal recruitment, I knew instantly that my organization was the one for me, as the women made me feel instantly at home. Being a part of something larger than myself has been one of the main attributes of my college career thus far.
I could genuinely not see my life without my sorority; it has given me such fantastic opportunities and has taught me so many things already. Many people do not recognize that Greek life not only provides the fun and social aspects of college but also helps prepare members for the real world.
I have a role on the executive team of my sorority. Having this title has helped me become a better and more effective leader. It has taught me not only how to lead my peers but lead women who are my friends and sisters. Having a leadership role aids in advancing communication skills, as you need to be constantly communicating with your sisters, advisors and your organization’s headquarters.
Furthermore, people tend to think that sorority life is solely about partying; however, it is much more than that. We have many sisterhood and philanthropic events throughout the year, which help us form deeper bonds and give back to our community.
For our sisterhood, we go on retreats, hold bonfires and do other fun activities to allow us to become closer. For our philanthropy, we do a week-long philanthropy week each year to collect money to donate to our cause; we hold drives for school supplies, clothing, period products, etc.
Sisterhood and philanthropy are two of the most important things to my organization, and I feel about Greek life in general. It gives us a purpose and a way to strive to make a change in the world.
Although Greek life may not be everyone’s cup of tea, I feel that VCU’s Greek life is an extremely welcoming community on our campus that embraces diversity and togetherness. I am so thankful to be a part of Greek life and am excited for all of the opportunities and memories left to make in my organization.