Sean Grove, senior international business major and president Sigma Pi, gives ice cream to students.

Julie Lybarger

Sean Grove, senior international business major and president Sigma Pi, gives ice cream to students.

Christina Faris

Building lifelong friendships, staying active in community service, and recruiting new members for rush week is part of belonging to a fraternity.

Sigma Pi calls them potentials, Kappa Alpha Order calls them rushees, and Kappa Sigma calls them a rush. No matter what these men are called, they are counting down the hours today in hopes of a knock on the door or a phone call to hear those life changing words, “welcome, brother.”

“Everyone should at least try it and get a feel of what rush is… instead of thinking negative upon it,” said Charlie Natividad, senior mass communications major and vice president of Kappa Alpha.

Belonging to a fraternity takes time and dedication, which is why the fraternities want men that meet their standards. Maintaining a certain grade-point average, putting in extra study hours, giving back to the community by lending a helping hand, and spending time with your brothers and alumni to keep fellowship are all-important factors.

This year, the fraternities believe they can now be noticed and heard. With the help of their Greek adviser, Tori Christiansen, director of student activities, the fraternities have a chance to show Joplin that not all Greeks are bad.

Natividad said people do not see the good in fraternities, they believe only what they see on television.

“People compare us to Animal House, and it leaves a bad taste in their mouths about Greeks,” he said. “That stuff doesn’t happen. And if it does, those fraternities don’t last long.”

Sigma Pi has done work around the campus. They have helped the football team, painted a wall in the Mission Hills Mansion, planted trees, helped out in the library, and after every home game on Sundays, they clean up the stadium, which they said is a tedious job.

“We have a national project ACE (Altruistic Campus Experience) where we do stuff in the community as well as on campus,” said Josh Buckner, junior criminal justice major and Sigma Pi member.

Sigma Pi also helps the community by adopting a highway and volunteering at the Ronald McDonald House.

“We need to get more Greeks involved so that others will see what it’s like to be Greek and the positive aspect of Greek life, as opposed to the negative,” said Charbel Bichara, senior international business major and Sigma Pi member.

While at this time Kappa Sigma is a colony, this fraternity has a goal to reach official chapter status this academic year.

They have a scholarship program, they have written by-laws, and they’re in the process of doing community service. Their only obstacle is not enough members.

“We’re planning on doing a fund raiser where many of us shave our heads to raise money for the Lance Armstrong Foundation,” said Will Lynch, sophomore pre-law major.

Kappa Sigma plans on promoting school spirit by attending Southern athletic events. They believe this will improve school spirit.

Each member in this fraternity does check-ups on each other to see if a brother is struggling and needing help in a class. They help one another reach that required GPA.

Kappa Alpha Order raises money for the MDA (Muscular Dystrophy association).

They honor loyalty, chivalry, and gentility. They are the oldest fraternity on campus, and they recruit year around.

Another advantage of being in a fraternity is networking. Having a brother in the company where you are trying to get a job is always helpful, especially for a reference. Members said it is gratifying to have so many members and knowing you always have a friend, lifelong friendships, bonds that last and people you can count on.

“There really is no way to describe it, you have to live it to believe it,” Bichara said.