For many parents, the thought of their child moving out of their house, going to college, and joining a Greek organization can be very stressful and overwhelming. We don’t blame them — Greek life gets a bad rap; even the best sororities and fraternities in the country face judgment and skepticism from parents and families. It comes with the territory.
If you want to join Greek Life and get your parents and family on board with your decision, here are a few strategies to encourage open conversations and gain their support.
What is Greek Life: A Guide to Educate Parents & Family
We already know about the myths and assumptions people make about Greek Life that are (for the most part) incorrect and stereotypical.
Your parents may have apprehension or fear about you joining a sorority based on what they witnessed in college, what they’ve seen in movies, and as of late, what they’ve seen on the news.
Establish Open Communication and Trust
Your parents trust you; they sent you off to college, after all! To maintain their trust, having open lines of communication is an effective way to reassure them that you are safe, happy, and not doing anything that makes you uncomfortable or puts you in harm’s way.
When you call home, give your parents updates on your weekend plans within the sorority, whether it’s a philanthropy event, study hours, or a social gathering. In doing so, your parents will feel involved in your life, even from a distance.
Involve Your Family in Greek & Campus Events
During your pledge semester, if your chapter has family events, be sure to extend the invitation to your parents. Let them know it is important to you that they attend so they can ask questions, learn about the Greek organization, and express any concerns.
Attending campus events will show your family that the sorority or fraternity you’ve joined is involved in the university and prioritizes philanthropy and your education, not just throwing parties.
Introduce Your Big Bro/ Sis
When your family comes to visit, introducing them to members of the chapter is another great way to establish trust and provide reassurance that you didn’t join an organization that is based on partying and drinking.
Make sure to introduce your parents to your big bro or sis, who can answer their questions and share details about the chapter from the perspective of an active member.
The Benefits of Greek Life on Campus for Students
Leaving home for the first time can be just as nerve-wracking for your parents as it is for you. Joining Greek Life gives you a social circle and a safe space for friendship and support from like-minded people.
While some kids struggle to make friends when they go away to college, joining a fraternity connects you with people who are in the same phase of life. You can study together, go to social events and eat meals together, all while learning new life skills and living on your own for the first time.
Greek Life Creates Bonds That Last a Lifetime
There are so many advantages that college students can experience when joining a fraternity or sorority. Your parents and family care about your safety, happiness, and success in college, so it is natural for them to worry.
Take the time to teach them about your chapter, involve them in campus events, and have them meet chapter leaders to ease any hesitation or concerns they have.
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