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Saturday, January 22, 2022

The Delta Tau Chi Fraternity at Faber College is more fantasy than reality.

The toga parties, elaborate hazing ceremonies and food fights do not accurately reflect what Greek life is really about.

About 2,000 students will partake in recruitment for one of the four Greek councils this year, adding to the nearly 5,000 students who make up the Greek community at UF.

Together, members of the Interfraternity Council, the Panhellenic Council, the Multicultural Greek Council and the National Pan-Hellenic Council account for about 15 percent of the UF student body population, according to Jack Causseaux, associate director of Sorority and Fraternity Affairs.

Formal recruitment for the Panhellenic Council is fast approaching, and recruitment for the other three councils is not far behind.

Students who are at all interested in joining a Greek chapter during their time at UF should start looking into gathering more information and rushing a sorority or fraternity, Causseaux said.

“It’s an experience a lot of people take advantage of,” he said.

The cost of joining a fraternity or sorority varies from chapter to chapter, although potential new members should understand that the cost is considerable.

There are 63 Greek chapters at UF, according to the 2010 Guide to Florida Greeks on the Sorority and Fraternity Affairs website. Thirty-nine of the chapters have houses.

Greek chapters participate in a number of community events every year, including Gator Growl and Homecoming, Greek Week, Dance Marathon, the National Pan-Hellenic Council Stepshow and the Multicultural Greek Council Field Day.

Together, the Greek councils raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity every year, according to the Guide to the Greeks.

The mentality that fraternities and sororities are all about boozing and partying all the time is a false one, Causseaux said.

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“These are values-based organizations,” he said. “People are looking to better themselves.”

The UF Greek community is dedicated to scholarship, leadership, service and community, he said.

Joining a Greek chapter helps students become more actively involved in the campus community, he said.

Fraternities and sororities are subject to rules and regulations just like every other student organization on campus, he said. One set of rules, for example, deals especially with hazing.

The UF anti-hazing policy is comparable to those of other universities, he said.

Requiring pledges to “ingest vile substances,” “commit sex acts” or “sacrifice or injure animals,” for instance, are not allowed, according to the Dean of Students Office website.

UF policy mandates that the students in each Greek chapter maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.85, but some chapters have even higher standards for their members.

Each chapter is either required to perform two service projects and one philanthropy, or chapters can opt to accomplish four service projects each semester.

Anyone who rushes a chapter expecting to party all the time is in for a rude awakening, Causseaux said.

“There’s much more expected of you than just coming out to party,” he said.

A lot of people scoff at the idea of joining a fraternity or sorority because they get the wrong idea from the media, he said.

But they are not all about wild parties, one-night stands and secret initiation rites.

“It’s fun to make fun of, but what you see on TV and in the movies is not accurate,” he said.

Joining a fraternity or a sorority can provide a student with a number of opportunities, he said.

A Greek chapter provides networking opportunities, the chance to meet new people outside of the residence halls, leadership experience and an atmosphere of fellowship that many people cherish after college.

“I believe in fraternities and sororities and I believe they can help students become better students,” Causseaux said.

For more information about Greek policies or recruitment dates, visit the Sorority and Fraternity Affairs website at greeks.ufl.edu or call 352-392-1671.

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