Seeing how college life, fraternities, and sororities are portrayed in popular culture, it’s not uncommon for young people to have illusions about them. If you consider the late ’90s and early ’00s trashy comedies and pop music, you’d think that students just have sex and drink unlimited amounts of alcohol while on campus.
Well, hate to break it to you, but in reality, things aren’t as cool and flamboyant. Sure, it’s not all doom and gloom — there’s a lot of fun to be had. Therefore, let’s go into details and explore what goes on there.
All Fraternities Do Is Party
Although wild parties and juvenile fun is how fraternities and sororities appear in the mainstream, it’s quite different in reality. Sure, sorority houses and college campuses are places where you’d usually find parties and fun, but there’s a lot more to these places. None of the students at college are there accidentally. All of them are pursuing higher education, which means their lives revolve around lots of hard work and studying. (Know the benefits of studying with friends)
If partying, drinking, and doing drugs was all they ever did, none of them would go on to become successful in different areas. This narrative is a romanticized image made by the media and pop culture. It’s easy to paint a certain picture this way, and making teen sex comedies without wild parties would be strange.
Joining a Fraternity Is Bad for Your Studies
Following the stereotype of constant partying and having fun, it’s easy to understand why some might think that becoming a member of a fraternity would be bad for their studies. However, since Greek life isn’t all about juvenile behavior, it’s not automatically bad for your studies.
Sure, it might be tempting to have more fun while in a community of this sort. But in the end, it mostly comes down to you and how much you want to better your education. It would be silly to blame your lack of success on a sorority or fraternity if you never sit down to study yourself.
Close communities like these can help you with your studies. Depending on your fellow fratmen, you might come across people willing to help you with exams. It all depends on the group you intend to join.
You’re Not Allowed to Make Friends Outside Your Fraternity
No matter how absurd this might sound, some people believe it. We can’t blame them since a fraternity seems like a sort of a secret society. In reality, though, this isn’t true at all. Some frats might be more closed to the public than others, but in no way are they Charlie Manson cults
Sure, it’s quite normal to be close to your frat buddies and all, but you can always make friends outside your Greek letter group. Otherwise, not many people would join such communities. So be sure that it’s quite okay to have friends who are not members.
It’s Only for Rich Kids
Again, pop culture portrayals of fraternities are so far out, it’s almost amusing how wrong they get it sometimes. No, they’re not just for the rich kids and aristocracy. Some might have been back in the early 20th century, but those days are long gone by now. Today, there’s more to them than the wealth of your family.
To get into a fraternity, you’ll need something else. You’ll need to be an original, interesting, and fun-loving person. You don’t need to be a jock or anything else. A potential new member needs wits, readiness to work for the team, and an all-out character that attracts others.
Fraternities Do Orgies
Oh, boy, would that be something — a group of young people close to each other only because they enjoy having group sex. Well, as fun as it sounds, fraternities aren’t about orgies. They’re not a creepy, mask-wearing cult that has its headquarters in a mysterious Victorian castle up on a hill.
Although some might be more about sex than others, it’s hardly an orgy you’ll find in a fraternity. These Eyes Wide Shut groups of men and women on top of each other stories are more in line with the Clintons. And sure as Hell, they are not in college anymore.
Joining a Fraternity Is Like Joining a Gang
Even if the initiation can be a bit theatrical, it’s not like you’re joining a drug cartel in Mexico. It’s more of a spoof than anything else. Moreover, films like American Pie Beta House or Van Wilder took it too far.
Yeah, you might be asked to do something unusual, but no one’s going to ask you to blow somebody’s brains out. Fraternities are about camaraderie and fun, but they are no criminal organizations. Even if that was true, the police would surely know by now.
Just imagine a gang of kids, drunk on beer, wearing tunics trying to extort money from the chancellor. That sounds like something from 21 Jump Street, even though that show was set in high-school. So don’t worry — you are not doing anything wrong if you’re looking to join a Greek letter club.
Fraternities Don’t Contribute to Society
You could argue this, but when did fraternities become a community service? Sure, they can have certain assignments on campus, but the intention behind a Greek letter house was never to keep public morale on a high note. It’s a group of young people looking to have fun while they’re living the best years of their lives.
On the other hand, they maintain certain values and keep the tradition. It’s not like frat houses came about yesterday — they have existed for a couple of centuries now. They are a way of keeping students together and allowing them to make bonds for the future. If you ask us, that’s certainly socially beneficial in our book.