Fewer men join Greek-letter life

On the heels of a record increase in the number of women joining sororities last month, fewer men joined Greek-letter life organizations this year than last year.

This fall, 285 men accepted invitations to join one of the 17 Interfraternity Council fraternities, down seven from last year’s fall rush. The seven-member decline comes after last year’s 80-member increase.

Bill Hulse, president of the Interfraternity Council, said he does not view this decrease as a detriment to Greek-letter life’s appeal on campus, and is confident that IFC membership will continue to grow in the future.

“I am very excited by the growth we have seen over the last few years and expect it to continue as some of the IFC’s younger chapters continue to expand their membership,” Hulse said.

Unlike sorority recruitment, which formally only takes place in the fall, the IFC also holds a formal spring rush, which, while smaller than fall rush, will still add to the number of men joining Greek-letter life at GW.

This year’s fraternity pledge class sizes vary by chapter, with some reporting high numbers of new members and others whose numbers were on par or slightly less than last year.

Corey Lewin, president of Beta Theta Pi, said his fraternity has a pledge class of 33, which essentially doubles its 34-member fraternity.

“I’ve never seen the enthusiasm that it is right now,” Lewin said. “We have thirty guys who are so excited.”

The Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity gave out 29 bids, all of which were accepted, which President Michael Waterman said was “on par with last year.”

In response to higher initial interest during the early part of the recruitment period, Pike held its first rush event in a larger venue to accommodate more men.

“I think that’s the same for a lot of other fraternities as well. Greek life’s gotten a lot bigger, it’s definitely more exciting this year, with it being 25 percent [of students involved in Greek-letter life at GW],” Waterman said.

Ashish Kumbhat, president of Sigma Chi, said his fraternity gave out 34 bids, adding that the Greek-letter life community continues to have a positive impact on the GW community.

“Students know that Greek life will offer them a range of benefits and experiences that will define their college careers,” Kumbhat said.

Director of the Student Activities Center Tim Miller said he was excited to welcome so many new students into the Greek-letter life community.

“We believe that the Greek experience at GW is second to none and we look forward to seeing how these new members will make this community their own in the coming months and years,” Miller said in an e-mail.

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