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  #1  
Old 02-21-2009, 11:02 PM
geryon geryon is offline
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Questions about Greek Life (from an outsider [UK])

Hi,

I'm a British student hoping to commence PhD study in the USA soon. I am 24 and am curious about Greek life, having heard the good and the bad. Can you answer a few of my questions?

Is my age and scholastic level a barrier? (Ie are Frats undergrad institutions)

Secondly, the UK is very multicultural and our student bodies are thoroughly integrated. Can people of any background join a Greek organization?

Are there graduate specific organizations?

I would be grateful if you can help me out with this information. My applications are in process with UCLA and Berkeley, so any institution insights would be great.

Thanks,

Geryon

Last edited by geryon; 02-21-2009 at 11:05 PM.
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  #2  
Old 02-21-2009, 11:25 PM
KSUViolet06 KSUViolet06 is offline
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Whether a fraternity allows grad students depends on the specific fraternity. They are mostly geared toward undergraduates.

Just wait until you get to Berkeley or UCLA and check them out.
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  #3  
Old 02-22-2009, 11:39 AM
geryon geryon is offline
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And the question on integration?
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  #4  
Old 02-22-2009, 12:41 PM
sigmaceli sigmaceli is offline
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Yes, I would say our groups are integrated.

Many chapters may be less diverse because of their geographical area, but overall, our national organizations are welcoming, regardless of male, female or co-ed groups.

As for the fact that you are pursuing a Ph.D., some undergraduate chapters may not be able to recruit you, but there are a lot of alumni chapters around UCLA/Berkeley who may be able to interest you in joining. Ultimately, I would suggest getting to know the students on your campus and making friends as you get to know your new environment for the next few years.
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  #5  
Old 02-22-2009, 02:05 PM
APhiAnna APhiAnna is offline
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Knowing guys in the fraternity system at UCLA and UC Berkeley, I am not really sure if a PhD candidate would be admitted to a fraternity even if they were allowed to admit a graduate student (a lot aren't). And to be honest, I am not sure if somebody who is seriously pursuing a PhD would really want to be around a lot of 19 year old guys doing kegstands and dancing with freshmen girls.

That being said, especially at those two schools, Greek life is very integrated. There are some (not many) schools in America where race is still an issue, but in the vast majority of schools (and certainly the two you said you are considering) a student from any race and any socio-economic background would be able to get a bid (pending, of course, that they fit in with the particular chapter).
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  #6  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:07 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by APhiAnna View Post
Knowing guys in the fraternity system at UCLA and UC Berkeley, I am not really sure if a PhD candidate would be admitted to a fraternity even if they were allowed to admit a graduate student (a lot aren't).
Yeah, but if he has a cute British accent it might bring girls in. I would check it out.
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  #7  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:11 PM
geryon geryon is offline
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I am only 24, the PhD objective does not change my age. 24 is young! (I insist on it).

Hypothetically, a 24 y/o dating a 19 year old isnt 'weird'. UK undergrad is 3 years, MA 1 year. Theoretically, one can start a PhD at 22 here.

I have researched GL in both schools, UCLA has 1 (?) graduate fraternity, but obviously my distance means I can only get a snapshot of a perspective.

Related questions, can someone not start a BA course in the US in their latter 20's (for instance). When I was 18 and started college, my best mate was 24-a mature student. It wasnt an issue here, is US college life more compartmentalized?
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  #8  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:16 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by geryon View Post
Related questions, can someone not start a BA course in the US in their latter 20's (for instance). When I was 18 and started college, my best mate was 24-a mature student. It wasnt an issue here, is US college life more compartmentalized?
You can start college at any time, but if you start undergrad in your 20s you're more likely to hang out with a "returning students" group than join a fraternity.

A lot of it has to do w/ the drinking age here - in some states you can't even go in a bar until you are legal (21) and in all states, the drinking age is 21. It really does put up a line between underclassmen and seniors, much more now than it used to as the rules are enforced more strictly.
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  #9  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:18 PM
Blue Skies Blue Skies is offline
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Originally Posted by 33girl View Post
Yeah, but if he has a cute British accent it might bring girls in. I would check it out.
Seriously!

I've known PhD candidates who have socialized with undergraduates. It's not completely uncommon for seniors to be taking graduate-level classes, anyway.
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  #10  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:20 PM
geryon geryon is offline
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Damn.

We did, and do, grab drinks with our professors. I had a US History lecturer who was 29. He'd join us in the bar periodically.

No first name terms either I take it?

I dont get how the age of consent can be 16, you can join the army at 18, but have to be 21 to have a drink in a bar?
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  #11  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:25 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by geryon View Post
Damn.

We did, and do, grab drinks with our professors. I had a US History lecturer who was 29. He'd join us in the bar periodically.

No first name terms either I take it?

I dont get how the age of consent can be 16, you can join the army at 18, but have to be 21 to have a drink in a bar?
Ask the stupid hookers from MADD who got the law pushed through. There's actually going to be a piece tonight on 60 Minutes about the college professors who are trying to get the law repealed.

As for professors, I think that really depends on school and on what class it is.
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  #12  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:30 PM
geryon geryon is offline
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Forgive my ignorance, MADD?
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  #13  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:33 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Mothers Against Drunk Driving. Be glad you've never heard of it.
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  #14  
Old 02-22-2009, 04:35 PM
geryon geryon is offline
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Well to be fair drink driving is a big problem.
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  #15  
Old 02-22-2009, 05:16 PM
agzg agzg is offline
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In grad school my professors would hold classes at bars, or go with students to a bar after a particularly hard test.

If we'd been in undergrad they'd have been fired.
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