In the coming years, the terminology regarding Greek Life at Trinity may change, according to members of Greek Council and the administration, but for now, nothing is absolute or required.
Briana McGlamory, speaking on behalf of Campus and Community Involvement and various administrators, outlined the possible language alternatives to Greek Council in August, but sororities and fraternities were notified of the possible change last week.
If implemented, the alterations would include changing “Greek Council” to “Fraternity and Sorority Council,” “Rush” to “Recruitment” and “Rushees” to “Potential New Members.” These modifications are more in line with the terminology used by national Greek organizations, and according to McGlamory, may help Greek Life at Trinity to have a more positive image.
“The word “˜Greek,’ particularly on the national level, has a negative connotation,” McGlamory said. “We are trying to get away from that, and it is small changes like these that will help us better our image.”
McGlamory also hopes that the change may emphasize important aspects of the Greek experience.
“At Trinity, we have four pillars,” said McGlamory, listing leadership, camaraderie, service and scholarship. “It’s not just the social aspect.”
Moira Allen, senior and Greek Council Women’s Co-Chair, said the change was not student initiated and Greek Council has not held a formal discussion on the matter.
“There hasn’t even been a discussion about it, let alone a vote. It’s mostly us just trying to encourage the use of the words by starting to incorporate it into our vocabulary, but we’re not making it mandatory,” Allen said. “It’s not a mass movement by any means. It was more of a “˜Hey, let’s try using this and see what happens.'”
For now, Greek Council will remain Greek Council and Greek Life at Trinity will still be called Greek Life. Organizations will also be allowed to distribute their rush related items with the word “rush” printed on them, but if the changes are made next year, all Greek wear and materials will need to reflect the altered lexicon.
So far, the possible changes have been met with some skepticism by members of the Greek community.
“I can see why they would want to change things,” said Gaby McKay, a senior and member of the sorority Sigma Theta Tau. “It might make it friendlier for non-Greeks, but it won’t really do anything.”
Gillian Priddy, a sophomore and fellow Sigma, believes that the Greek tradition and jargon runs too deep for any difference to be made now.
“It is difficult to change terminology when we have such an extensive and rich history,” Priddy said.
This isn’t the first time that terminology regarding Greek Life has been debated. In previous years, the words “pledge,” “pledge class” and “pledging” were swapped in favor of “new active member,” “new active class” and “orientation.”
Skye Cornelia, member of the sorority Chi Beta Epsilon referenced this change, but maintained that little has changed.
“I think people won’t change their terminology,” Cornelia said. “People still call orientation “pledging,” even now.”
Rush Kick-Off will begin today at 2:30 p.m. and marks the beginning of the official rush process.