Greek: We want your money
Greek Life = money.
It seems many people look down on the Greek community for this reason, that it’s ridiculously expensive to be part of such a “cult.” However, with fees come even the smallest perks (including toilet paper and Kleenex) that most people don’t think about. A member of my sorority’s house corporation board (a board of older alumnus that oversee the wellness of our physical chapter house) spoke to us during a chapter meeting about a month ago to break down the money that each of us feed into the sorority.
The fees are no secret. Anybody can access the broken down costs of most every chapter house on campus here.
First off, new member fees: One-time fees that non-initiated members pay to cover the costs of their new member education, pledge pins and retreats.
Next, live-in dues: The costs to live in a chapter house are comparable to dorm living, and in my opinion, are much better living environments than the dorms. These costs go entirely to running the house smoothly and keeping our members fed and healthy. Enough toilet paper, Kleenex and paper towels for the house to last a year eats up a few member’s entire room and board alone. And then there’s internet, cable, electricity and water. When broken down, the costs make sense.
Dues to the fraternity/sorority: These costs go towards retreats, brotherhoods/sisterhoods, social functions, philanthropies and recruitment. In other words, these dues go towards what actually makes up the Greek Life life in general.
Extra dues: Every chapter has a savings account for emergency situations. These houses are old. Old houses do not keep up very well. Spontaneous leaks and plumbing issues are common occurrences that need to be taken care and paid for.
Paying these dues to my sorority isn’t “buying friends.” Think of it this way: at my high school, I had to pay $50 a year to be part of the “associated student body” in order to participate in extracurricular activities. I paid $200 a year to be part of the varsity track and field team, which became my family. You could say that’s technically “buying my friends” too. Sure, paying these dues opens the door to this community, but that’s comparable to saying I pay my tuition to this college just to gain friends. There is so much more beyond general friendship that come with being in a fraternity or sorority.
The price may seem steep, but when broken down, it makes sense.
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