8 Common Myths About Being in a Sorority
sorority formal by araza123 licensed by CC BY 2.0
Sororities are often portrayed in the media as a bunch of squealing, scandalous girls that fit perfectly into a cookie cutter mold, rule the school, and basically stomp on anyone who isn’t good enough to join their group. Despite these negative associations, sorority girls aren’t actually the college version of Mean Girls, and there are many misconceptions about what being in sorority is all about.
1. Sorority girls aren’t smart.
Contrary to popular belief, sorority girls are not dumb. In most sororities, girls have to maintain a minimum GPA to join and maintain membership. In addition to that, there are often study hour requirements that have to be met in order to participate in events. These requirements are based on the GPA you achieved the previous semester, so they adjust according to each girl’s needs.
2. You’re buying your friends.
Yes, there are dues that have to be paid. But there are no forced friendships. Dues generally include fees that need to be paid to a national office for the chapter, as well as contributing to the total budget the group has to use for philanthropic fundraisers, school events, educational events, and other group activities. Like with any other club or organization, you grow closer to the members involved because you all share common interests. But you also get recognized for all the unique things that make you, you.
3. All you do is party.
We love to have a good time, but there’s a LOT more to being in a sorority than what you see on TV. There are actual rules and guidelines that need to be followed in order to remain a functioning chapter. If all a group did was party, it would be difficult to follow these rules and guidelines. Academics, philanthropy and service, and sisterhood are all much more important. Many sororities have their own rules implemented that include anything from a “dry” sorority house to not misrepresenting the values of the group or the group as a whole due to alcohol consumption. Bottom line, there are a lot more things that are of higher importance than throwing parties.
4. You only care about the other girls in your sorority.
It might seem like sororities tend to become somewhat of a college clique. There is no rule that says you can only be friends with your sisters or other people involved in Greek life. A lot of sororities are interested in branching out to other clubs and groups on campus. As part of their dedication to service, they are very open to working with other organizations to develop a sense of community throughout the entire campus.
5. Only a certain type of girl can be in a sorority.
Sorority girls are not all cookie-cutter Barbies like they seem to be in the movies. They care about a lot more than fashion and makeup. Philanthropy is a big part of what differs between groups, as well as the chapter values and history. Every group is a little different, which makes room for all different types of girls with different interests to find the organization that best suits them. You don’t have to look like a Barbie and fit into a perfect cookie-cutter mold to be in a sorority.
6. You’re going to get hazed.
This is probably one of the biggest myths out there. The majority of Greek life groups, sororities and fraternities alike, have a strict no hazing policy. These policies are implemented by national offices, as well as by the universities. Groups that ignore the policies face serious consequences from both authorities.
7. Your rituals basically make you a cult.
Ritual is a crucial and unique part of every individual sorority. These rituals are simply part of our sisterhood, not for summoning the devil.
8. Sororities are a waste of time.
It’s not uncommon for potential new members to worry about the time commitment that comes along with being in a sorority. But every group is different. A general rule is that you get out of it what you put into it. Building relationships with people who share your values and interests is an important part of being in college, and joining Greek life is a great chance to do that. Sororities also offer many opportunities for service, as well as leadership, which looks great on grad school and employment applications. So, in addition to meeting new people and building lasting friendships, you’re also preparing for future opportunities.