Greek Life

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Greek Life

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5 College Freshman

Greek Life: Great life is very prominent at Cornell. The great thing is that there's no pressure to participate if you don't want to. Beyond social fraternities and sororities, there are also many professional and an honors fraternity available.

4 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Greek Life: I love it. Definitely join greek life.

1 College Sophomore

Greek Life: I had an indifferent viewpoint toward Greek life, but now I despise it. Note this review ONLY applies to social Greek life and is my OPINION.

Greek life adds very little to Cornell. The philanthropy they carry out is often for publicity stunts, and they do very little philanthropy and volunteering. The students very rarely care much about academics and are only concerned about sliding by classes with good grades and getting good jobs. Greek life is cultish and cliquey, and I find that if you're not part of Greek life, you may be able to get into parties, but you'll generally be excluded from the Greek community as a whole. And even the social scene they offer is very limited and almost always revolves around alcohol. I'm sorry, but wine tours? How is that fun!?! Because you go and get blasted out of your minds! Although Greek life states that it exists for academics, philanthropy, and fraternity, I, as stated above, find that it's the complete opposite.

The worst part about the issue with Greek life is that it seems that the administration ignores the woes of Greek life because students in Greek life will end up being the most generous donors to Cornell after they graduate. Yes, I've said it: The reason why I think the administration is often lenient (note: NOT always lenient, especially with regard to hazing, thank the Lord) toward Greek life is because Greek life becomes a symbol of fraternity to Cornell students, which increases the likelihood that they'll enjoy their experience at Cornell and want to give back. So I think that the administration actually discriminates toward Greek organizations.

Additionally, what Greek life does do can be accomplished with through on-campus housing. Philanthropy? Look into the PSC (doubt many Greek life even know what it is). Fraternity? West Campus, although it may not be the best fit for many students, is plenty fraternal. Academics? Honors and preprofessional fraternities.

I'd say more, but no more space.

10 people found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Greek Life: I am a greek, and likely would not have chosen to go greek at a different school. However, if you are not an athlete, or involved in many other campus organizations, this is a great way to meet people. It is important that you do not listen to stereotypes when selecting a house, and sincerely choose the house that you will be happiest in, and make the most of it.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Greek Life: Greek life has a pretty large presence on campus because many people participate in Greek life. There isn't any sort of attitude--Greeks don't look down on non-Greeks, and vice-versa. However, there is a bit of resentment because Cornell only guarantees on-campus housing freshman year. Some argue that Cornell sets aside too much space for Greek life and that, should the fraternities and sororities be cut down a bit, it could be possible for more students to live on campus as they wish.

3 people found this useful Report
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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Most students agree that Greek life is very visible on campus. However, for those who don’t wish to participate, it’s fairly easy to ignore, although finding parties may prove difficult. Greek life dominates the social scene for those under 21, after which its influence decreases considerably.

Some students are suspect of the Greek system’s practices and its support of cliques and a patriarchal system. Negative stereotypes about those in the Greek system may or may not be true, but many students support and enjoy Greek life. Fraternities and sororities may insulate themselves, but many host open parties, events, and charity drives that engage the entire Cornell community. In general, members of the Greek system love it, and outside members are either apathetic or dislike it—it really depends on individual preference.
 

Facts & Statistics

Undergrad Men in Fraternities
32%
Undergrad Women in Sororities
23%
Number of Fraternities
42
Number of Sororities
11
Fraternities
  • Acacia
  • Alpha Delta Phi
  • Alpha Epsilon Pi
  • Alpha Gamma Rho
  • Alpha Sigma Phi
  • Alpha Tau Omega
  • Alpha Zeta
  • Beta Theta Pi
  • Chi Phi
  • Chi Psi
  • Delta Chi
  • Delta Kappa Epsilon
  • Delta Phi
  • Delta Tau Delta
  • Delta Upsilon
  • Kappa Alpha Society
  • Kappa Delta Rho
  • Kappa Sigma
  • Lambda Chi Alpha
  • Phi Delta Theta
  • Phi Gamma Delta
  • Phi Kappa Psi
  • Phi Kappa Tau
  • Phi Sigma Kappa
  • Pi Kappa Alpha
  • Pi Kappa Phi
  • Psi Upsilon
  • Seal and Serpent Society
  • Sigma Alpha Epsilon
  • Sigma Alpha Mu
  • Sigma Chi
  • Sigma Chi Delta
  • Sigma Nu
  • Sigma Phi Epsilon
  • The Sigma Phi Society
  • Sigma Pi
  • Tau Epsilon Phi
  • Tau Kappa Epsilon
  • Theta Delta Chi
  • Theta Xi
  • Zeta Beta Tau
  • Zeta Psi
Sororities
  • Alpha Chi Omega
  • Alpha Epsilon Phi
  • Alpha Phi
  • Alpha Xi Delta
  • Delta Delta Delta
  • Delta Gamma
  • Kappa Alpha Theta
  • Kappa Delta
  • Kappa Kappa Gamma
  • Pi Beta Phi
  • Sigma Delta Tau
Multicultural Colonies
  • alpha Kappa Delta Phi
  • Alpha Phi Alpha
  • Delta Sigma Theta
  • Iota Phi Theta
  • Kappa Alpha Psi
  • Kappa Phi Lambda
  • Lambda Phi Epsilon
  • Lambda Pi Chi
  • Lambda Theta Alpha
  • Lambda Theta Phi
  • Lambda Upsilon Lambda
  • Omega Phi Beta
  • Phi Beta Sigma
  • Pi Delta Psi
  • Sigma Gamma Rho
  • Sigma Lambda Upsilon
Other Greek Organizations
  • Greek Council
  • Greek Peer Advisors InterFraternity Council
  • Order of Omega
  • Panhellenic Council
Did You Know?
  • The Greek scene varies considerably, ranging from typical, social-oriented chapters to service and pre-professional fraternities.
  • Joining a fraternity or sorority can open new avenues in your social experience at Cornell. Most chapters have their own parties, formals, and football tailgates. They also join in all-Greek events. Being a part of the Greek organization gives you the opportunity to meet and develop friendships with people from all walks of life.
  • Some members actively participate in community service activities in and around the greater Ithaca area. During Rush Week, girls visit each sorority on campus to meet with sisters in order to find an ideal match. Guys, on the other hand, visit fraternities of their choice for "smokers" during the daytime.

Student Polls

What is Greek life's role in the campus social scene?    Based on 92 responses

  • 64% Greek life is pretty big. You don't have to join to enjoy the parties, but you might want to consider it.
  • 26% Greek life is average, and no one will treat you differently if you don't join.
  • 9% Greek life is huge-you're no one if you're not Greek.
  • 1% Greek life is pretty low-key and has little effect on the social scene.
  • 0% We don't have Greek life.

What is the general attitude of non-Greeks toward Greeks?    Based on 91 responses

  • 4% Most non-Greeks think Greeks do great things for the community.
  • 35% Most non-Greeks are indifferent about Greeks.
  • 38% Non-Greeks think Greeks are only good for the parties they throw.
  • 22% Non-Greeks see Greeks as snobby and cliquey.

What kind of housing is available for Greek students?    Based on 91 responses

  • 84% Greek students live in opulent chapter houses.
  • 1% Greek students live in dedicated wings in the dorms.
  • 1% No special housing is available.
  • 14% Greek students live in run-down chapter houses.

How difficult is it to get into a fraternity or sorority?    Based on 92 responses

  • 8% Very easy.
  • 53% Somewhat easy.
  • 36% Somewhat difficult.
  • 3% Very difficult.
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