Evan Collotti, Whetstone writer
It is the first day of classes and the members of Greek life are sporting their letters. Typically, this would be nothing out of the ordinary to Greeks, but this semester means a lot more.
The Wesley College Greeks are fresh off of their suspension levied against them early November last semester due to a hazing incident that involved three Phi Kappa Sigma pledges and a Theta Phi Alpha pledge. The terms of the suspension were: no letters were to be worn on campus, no organization could hold meetings on campus, and no events were to be held on campus for the remainder of the semester.
Now with the spring semester in full swing, the Greeks are looking to improve their reputation with the school and student body.
“We’ve been rebuilding for a few years now and were trying to get ourselves out there,” Josh Houseknecht, vice president of Phi Kappa Sigma, said. “With the events we have planned such as the community clean-ups, a drunk driving seminar, and the car smash up fundraiser, we hope this will improve our image on campus.”
The Greeks are still adjusting to the change in personnel with the departure of Sarah Smith and the addition of LaDarius Thompson and Dr. Colleen Di Raddo.
“We are looking to create new policies that will fit the needs of organizations because the old policies had some flaws,” LaDarius Thompson, coordinator of student affairs said. “We’ve been holding meetings every Wednesday to work on these policies as well as individual meetings. It’s all about moving forward as a group.”
Many Greeks were looking at the grand scheme of things during the suspension. Although things were put on hold for the organizations, they are still focused at the task at hand.
“It was a big wake-up call for us,” Pat Aruta, treasurer of Alpha Phi Delta, said. “The incident last semester made us realize that there were many faults and holes in the Greeks system, so we are looking for a fresh start. Many Greeks were upset about not being able to wear letters but, in my eyes, you shouldn’t have an article of clothing representing who you are. Yes, they are great and show pride, but an organization should be identified by their actions.”
There is no question that the Greeks have a less-than-adequate reputation on campus after the events of last semester.
“As of now, we are reconstructing and trying to build a bond with the student body as well as dissolving the stereotypes of Greeks,” Jamie Arthur, president of Theta Phi Alpha, said.
With various Greek organizations sponsoring many different events from community service to seminars to fundraisers to Wishfest, the Greeks are hoping to gain the respect of Wesley’s faculty and students.