Students of Color Perspective: Sororities

922678_10208762138957738_9004561469057105419_nHello! My name is Alejandra (Ali) Gatas Johnson and I will be one of your first-year bloggers for Students of Color Perspectives. I blog about what it means to be of mixed heritage (Afro-Venezuelan, American Swedish, and Warao Indian) and what it means to be a student of color in general here at Brown!

This semester, I decided to rush the sororities. I honestly had little to no expectations about the three sororities on campus. I simply wanted to give them a shot and see if I was a good match or not. Rush weekend I was met with a sea of people (+300 women rushed). Yelling over the other 50 or so other voices in the room, I attempted to get to know the sorority sisters of Kappa Alpha Theta, Kappa Delta, and Alpha Chi Omega. Each sorority had a vastly different vibe, but the one thing that they all had in common was a stark lack of diversity. 

While Greek life on Brown’s campus is far from the stereotypical (more low key and smaller than others), the white trend remains. There were very few females of color that rushed, as well as very few women of color in the sororities. Out of a sorority chapter of around 130, I could probably list off around 20 women of color.

Despite this observation, the three sororities are all amazing and such great communities of women. After rush weekend, I knew I had a community (Alpha Chi Omega). Now, I am so glad I rushed. I can’t imagine my college experience without my sisters. I have learned to be strong and genuine with them by my side.

As I have become more active in AXO, I have grown more in love with the organization. It makes me wish that more students of color felt comfortable/wanted to pursue Greek life. I begin to question if there is something unwelcoming about sororities. Is it because of media portrayal of Greek life? What is preventing an increasingly diverse study body from creating an equally diverse Greek community?

I don’t have answers to these questions, but I can say that as a student of color, Greek life is a fantastic option. I welcome any Latinx, Black, Native, etc. student to consider Greek life and pave a path for others to do the same. We, students of color, must empower each other to pursue new horizons and communities.

If you have any questions or comments about this post or about being a student of color in general, please hit me up at alejandra_gatas_johnson@brown.edu.

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