Healthy Heroes

Members of Missouri State's football and field hockey teams volunteered with the Boys and Girls Club.

The decision of whether or not to rush a fraternity or sorority might be one of the biggest and most impactful decisions of your college career. Some people find their niche with Greek life and love every minute of it.

Others find their place in non-Greek organizations. The same types of friendships, experiences and opportunities can be found without having Greek letters on your chest.

Greek Life: One Slice of the Huge Student Organizations Pie

There are over 300 student organizations at Missouri State, according to the Office of Student Engagement. Out of those 300, 35 are Greek organizations. This means there are at least 265 other organizations for you could possibly join. There are organizations with focuses on politics, social concerns, religion, sports, arts and just about anything else. There is an organization for everybody at MSU.

Getting involved in a non-Greek student organization can give you the same experiences and friends as a Greek organization, without the process and time commitment of going through the new member process.

Whether you choose Greek or not, getting involved with campus life exponentially enhances your college experience. Be sure to check out the new student festival on Sunday, Aug. 20, at 3 p.m. in the Plaster Student Union to see all of the student organizations.

Pro Tip: If you are undecided about your major, check out an academic/professional organization you might be interested in. You can get a taste of the subject without paying for classes.

Greek Life Isn’t Free

If you are thinking about joining a Greek chapter, you must consider the expenses because there are many. The expenses vary between fraternities and sororities.

These figures are a sum of dues, new member costs and other fees. Housing and additional expenses associated with Greek life are not included.

Your first semester with an MSU fraternity can cost you somewhere between $335 to $865. The cost for the spring semester can be $90 to $500 in most chapters.

Sorority life at MSU is even more expensive. Your first fall semester in a sorority can cost anywhere from $680 to $1,019. The price for the spring semester can range from $415 to $975.

Greek organizations have different plans for covering your bills and expenses, but you are still paying hundreds of dollars a semester.

In the end, it is completely up to you whether the friends, experiences and benefits of membership in a Greek organization are worth the money. Money isn’t everything, but college itself is expensive, and it isn’t getting any cheaper.

Make this year count

The new membership process and money are just two things about Greek life that might drive some away. Whether you decided to go Greek or not, the underlying message is to get involved. The classroom is only part of the college experience. Getting connected to a club or organization is how you build friendships, experience new things and establish networking opportunities. This 2017-2018 school year only happens once, so make the most of it.