By Gabriela Cavazos
SAN ANTONIO—Greek life has been in the news frequently this school year for allegations and problems that range from racism, sexual harassment, violence and hazing-related injuries to even deaths.
Sigma Alpha Epsilon has been in the media spotlight recently for a nine-second video that surfaced on YouTube of members of the Oklahoma University fraternity singing racist lyrics about their society.
In an attempt to sooth tension between the fraternities and the nation, Sigma Alpha Epsilon National President Brad Cohen announced that all chapters of the fraternity would do away with the pledging process. This decision comes after the society received high scrutiny for their dangerous hazing, such as binge drinking, sexual misconduct, and forcing/scaring pledges to participate in other degrading behaviors.
The Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter was immediately banned from Oklahoma University, which sparked many colleges around the nation to look into the values of the fraternities and sororities on their campus.
Locally, Trinity University permanently revoked Pi Kappa Alpha this past March for issues involving hazing, alcohol abuse, and coercive behavior. After these aspects of the fraternity were revealed, the National Alumni Board of Fraternities and Sororities believed the frat members did not follow the values and history the fraternity was founded under.
It is not difficult to spot Our Lady of the Lake University students who are also involved in Greek life, walking around campus with their spiffy shirts. As somebody who is not involved in a sorority, I have been curious about what the values of these fraternities and sororities are after the recent controversy about Sigma Alpha Epsilon.
There are five recognized sororities and fraternities on campus which include, Delta Xi Nu Multicultural Sorority, Kappa Delta Chi Sorority, Epsilon Sigma Alpha, Sigma Theta Epsilon National Christian Fraternity, and Omega Delta Phi Fraternity.
Here are what these sororities and fraternities’ values are, according to the website of each society.
Sorority Delta Xi Nu is committed to furtherance of multiculturalism by promoting diversity and cultural awareness in our local communities and throughout the world.
Sorority Kappa Delta Chi is committed to promote the values of Unity, Honesty, Integrity and Leadership among women at colleges and universities.
Epsilon Sigma Alpha work together in support of important causes, developing meaningful and lasting relationships, and encouraging personal growth.
Fraternity Sigma Theta Epsilon promotes the organization of university men of all different Christian denominations who love God and want to learn how to serve Him better through service and fellowship. Membership is truly a life-changing experience, and it is our sincere desire to learn, grow, and serve God better through encouraging and praying for one another.
Fraternity Omega Delta Phi is a multicultural service/social fraternity dedicated to the needs and concerns of the community, and shall promote and maintain the traditional values of unity, honesty, integrity, and leadership.
So there lies the question whether these fraternities and sororities follow these values on campus. Should Greek life be revoked on campus or are these members living up to what they pledged?
Senior Mercedes Dobson believes these sororities on campus do not live up to their full potential. “I wouldn’t know if people were in Greek life unless they wore those shirts. Most of them never hold beneficial events on campus or help the community at all. It’s all just social.” said Dobson.
However there are always two sides to every story. “Sororities and fraternities are beneficial to OLLU. They build friendship and bonds with other students that would not be created if it weren’t for the Greeks on campus,” said freshman Samantha Perales.
Though I believe there are pros and cons to Greek life on campus, every fraternity and sorority should ultimately hold to the values and mission statements there society was founded on.