Greek organizations on campus want students to know that they are more than the negative publicity they often receive.
So, a forum hosted by the Temple University Greek Association last Wednesday set out to address that, giving members of the 24 university-recognized fraternities and sororities a venue to talk about issues affecting Greek life here.
“Unfortunately, people who don’t know [about Greek life] go by the negative stuff,” said Matthew Raisman, president of TUGA.
“So I really think it’s our job to combat that by doing good things.”
Proudly wearing their Greek letters, students discussed Greek unity, the future of TUGA and how to rid Temple Greek life of negative perceptions. A panel comprising TUGA executive board members fielded questions that were written anonymously by audience members.
Members of fraternities and sororities present said they feel the negative attention, misconceptions and stereotypes about their organizations overshadow their positive contributions to the Temple community.
“Sometimes in class I am very hesitant to wear my letters [during] the first few weeks of school because the teacher [will] judge you,” said TUGA Treasurer Gia Badolato.
“But also, within the administration, I have never received anything negative, so I think that we have a good balance.”
As the governing body for all Greek organizations on Main Campus, TUGA works to promote diversity and unity among all Greek organizations, which Raisman and members of the executive board said was a problem in the past.
But now as relations within the Greek community improve, encouraging a unified support system among fraternities and sororities has become a growing problem. Some students noted that Greek life on other college campuses appeared to be more connected than at Temple.
“Everyone is on board with having more programs, more fun activities and that’s going to be the focus for TUGA,” Raisman said.
“[But] having everyone involved is one of the biggest things for Greek life and that is one of our goals.”
Raisman said the promotion of Greek events along with other student organizations’ events will help encourage more students to participate in Greek events and attract a more positive response overall.
“It would be great if there was an online calendar where all student organizations could post their events,” he said.
“This would allow TUGA to reach out more and collaborate with events. Big events can make big differences.”
TUGA has plans for Greek Week this spring, a 10-day event on Main Campus in which all Greek organizations will participate in events such as the Greek Olympics and Alex’s Lemonade Stand, a service project that raises money to benefit pediatric cancer research.
Maya Davis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.