Asbury Puts New Spin On Greek Week
August 26, 2016
WILMORE, Ky. — As colleges and universities around the country celebrate Greek Week, Asbury University puts its own spin on Greek life, celebrating intercultural and ethnic student groups and academic honors societies.
Unlike traditional fraternities and sororities, societies at Asbury don’t require extravagant membership dues or participation in elaborate traditions and social functions (an intercultural movie night is a typical event). Instead, they’re about encouragement, support and healthy fun.
This week, Asbury’s version of Greek Week celebrated five societies with a special emphasis on intercultural, third-culture and ethnic students. The following societies met for their first events of the year, welcoming new members, getting to know each other and planning for upcoming events.
- Mu Kappa (ΜΚ) — Third-culture Students
- Alpha Sigma Alpha (ΑΣΑ) — Asian-American Student Alliance
- Beta Sigma Alpha (ΒΣΑ) — Black-American Student Alliance
- Lambda Sigma Alpha (ΛΣΑ) — Latina/o-American Student Alliance
- Iota Sigma Alpha (ΙΣΑ) — International Student Alliance
In addition to providing support for students, ethnic and intercultural societies give students a platform to share with each other and with the rest of campus.
“These groups create an opportunity to celebrate the things students value in common,” said Esther Jadhav, director of Intercultural Programs at Asbury. “Another benefit of these groups is that they’re drawing students from the majority culture to come and learn more.”
Additionally, each intercultural and ethnic society will host a campus-wide event this year. Two upcoming events are a Mid-Autumn Festival on Sept. 9, organized by the Asian-American Student Alliance, Intercultural Programs and the Global Engagement Office, and the Festival Latino de Asbury on Sept. 23, organized by the Latino-Student Alliance and Intercultural Programs.
Asbury students can also get participate in a number of academic honors societies that provide support, encouragement and service opportunities:
- Phi Alpha Theta (ΦΑΘ)— History Honors Society
- Sigma Zeta (ΣΖ) — Math and Science Honors Society
- Nu Pi (ΝΠ) — Spanish Language Honors Society
- Phi Chi (ΦΧ) — Social Work Honors Society
- Pi Delta Phi (ΠΔΦ) — French Language Honors Society
- Psi Chi (ΨΧ) — Psychology Honors Society
Like Asbury intercultural ethnic groups, academic societies are also active in broader campus life. For instance, Sigma Zeta hosts Kids’ College, an annual event that gives students from kindergarten to eighth grade hands-on experience in biology, chemistry and physics labs.
“It’s important for us to give back because we’re pouring into the younger individuals that are the future doctors, the future scientists, the future researchers,” said Mary Eastham ’17, president of Asbury’s Sigma Zeta chapter. “We’re encouraging them to pursue science and pursue their goals — no dream is too big. If they want to be a rocket scientist, they should be a rocket scientist.”
For students of all majors, Asbury’s clubs and organizations — more than 150 on campus — can provide great support, community and encouragement.
“It’s important to be around other like-minded individuals who have some of the same goals and aspirations,” Eastham said. “For Sigma Zeta, those goals are often medical school, vet school or research. We come together to foster those aspirations and work together. It looks great on a resume, too.”
To learn more about getting involved with Asbury’s clubs and organizations, visit: asbury.edu/clubs.