There is no Greek life at Bates. The closest thing the College has to Greek life is some of the campus-owned houses, which occasionally throw parties that mimic frat parties. There are advantages and disadvantages to the lack of Greek life. Bates’ policy prohibits exclusive organizations, so lacking Greek life does make Bates more egalitarian. Not permitting fraternities and sororities allows Bates to avoid the issues that come with Greek organizations—there are no worries about hazing on campus or about Greek life dominating the social scene. Still, fraternity and sorority houses are where students on most other campuses go to drink, so without frats here, parties happen everywhere on campus, which can be a problem for students who need to sleep or do work. The ubiquitous parties at Bates have led some students who do drink to choose housing in chem-free dorms, simply to get a break from the noise and mess generated by parties.
Most Batesies are fairly indifferent to the idea of having Greek organizations. The school is full of very opinionated individuals, and yet the issue of having fraternities and sororities has yet to rear its ugly head. Some Bates students graduate without ever having gone to a frat party, and most don’t seem to regret that in any way. Greek life is a non-issue at Bates. It seems unlikely the College will ever have fraternities of sororities, which is something Batesies aren’t going to lose any sleep over. As for excessive partying and binge drinking—they’ll lose plenty of sleep over that!