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Greek Culture As A Subculture At Syracuse University

3032 words - 13 pages

Research Context
Being new to a college campus, I've learned to adjust. I’ve stepped outside my comfort zone and learned to explore various outlets. Little did I know that the college culture didn’t fall too far from the typical high school environment. Subcultures, or what I’d like to call clicks, seemed to be something that transcends from each level of schooling. In college this subculture is known as the Greek system and it is one of the major outlets students use for socializing.
I decided to analyze and examine the social structure of the Greek System in Syracuse University mainly out of curiosity. When I was high school I remembered hearing from various of my former classmates, who were then freshmen at college, that one of the best activities students experience were attending the “frat” parties students threw. In high school, I thought that college parties were the same as the ones found in movies like “American Pie” so hearing people speak so fondly of college parties confirmed my beliefs of what the social aspect of college was. Now that I’m a freshman at Syracuse University, and have experienced the social atmosphere firsthand, I’ve noticed how different the social scene on campus really is in comparison to the movies and how it is greatly enhanced by the Greek community.
Examining the Greek system is significant to me because Greek life is a dominant tradition in many universities, both academically and socially, and I am interested in understanding why it is so prominent here on campus. Additionally, analyzing the overall structure of the Greek System will allow me to understand why students feel inclined to become a member of these organizations while others don’t. In order to comprehend this student subculture, however, it is imperative to define what the Greek System really is and what core values they are based on.
The Greek System, composed of different Fraternity and Sorority communities are organizations that focus on academic, social, and professional support. The difference between fraternities and sororities is that fraternities are organizations for males while sororities are for females. However, they are all “defined as a group of individuals joined together by common goals and aspirations” (cite this).These organizations are found on numerous colleges and universities around the nation and are “known as the oldest form of student self-governance in the American[schooling] system” (cite). Since 1825, fraternities and sororities have been a force on college campuses and it is mostly because of all the benefits that derive from being involved.
However, when people think about Greek Life, they imagine a lifestyle full of binge drinking, consistent partying, open drug use and other acts of reckless activities. Although, most of these activities do happen, the idea that this is all it consist of is a very big misconception often portrayed through pop culture. Most people imagine these things because the Media...

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