Greek life on the campus of UNCC has a life of its own. Fraternity and sorority members are contributing to this community in ways that you may never have imagined.About 1,500 students belong to the 33 Greek organizations at UNCC. They are ethnically diverse, and some are career-oriented.Many members of the organizations have worked tirelessly to lift others in this community. We don’t often hear about their good works. Michelle Guobadia is UNCC’s director of fraternity and sorority life. Her role is to oversee and advise the 33 nationally recognized fraternities and sororities on campus.UNCC established that position more than 15 years ago. Guobadia has held the position for four years. She believes “the essence of fraternity and sorority life is to make men become better men and women become better women,” she said.A few examples of commitment to the community were easy to find.Triangle Fraternity has logged about 300 community service hours this year. It is a unique Greek organization because it has no Greek letters and is geared toward men seeking careers in engineering, architecture or sciences. Some of Triangle’s community outreach efforts have included participating in campus cleanups, painting an art therapy room at Alexander Children’s Home and helping Habitat for Humanity. The Habitat project involved tearing apart such items as washing machines, clothes dryers and stoves to gather scrap metal to be used for building purposes. “As a community, we all need to be able to help one another,” said Anthony Mendez, a civil engineering major and vice president of Triangle. “Giving back to those around us is a huge part of our fraternity, and it’s something that we try to portray to every brother that comes through Triangle Fraternity.”Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority has been dedicated to service, scholarship and sisterhood for 18 years at UNCC. One of its major projects is Operation Big Book Bag, which is part of its national organization’s effort. Members collect monetary donations and school supplies for surrounding community schools. James G. Martin Middle School has benefited from the donations and through tutoring and mentoring programs. Among other projects, the sorority has also raised money and cooked dinner for residents at the Battered Women’s Shelter. Since 2002, the Delta Kappa Chapter of Chi Omega at UNCC has sponsored eight Make-A-Wish golf tournaments to help children with life-threatening medical conditions. The chapter recently hosted “Love is a Battlefield: A Dating Game,” which raised additional money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Members of the sorority have been directly involved with a few of the children.“Nothing can replace the joy and enthusiasm on a child’s face when they see their wish being granted, and nothing can replace getting to know such wonderful and deserving children and their families,” said Meghan Gibson, president of Chi Omega at UNCC.Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity partnered with The Grove Presbyterian Church and BB&T to set up a playground at the church. The bank donated $5,000 through its Lighthouse Initiative Program. The fraternity has also done work to clear the grounds in preparation for the playground equipment. They hope to complete the project by early June. The fraternity has been involved with several other projects, including adopting J.W. Clay Boulevard, along which they clean up several times a year.The UNCC Greek life website, email@example.com, offers a long list of benefits to potential members of a fraternity or sorority. It is uplifting to learn more about the time, talent and resources the Greek members devote to uplifting Charlotte. This type of commitment is not new. Sometimes the projects are mandated by the national fraternities and sororities, and sometimes project ideas come through the local college chapters.Guobadia summed it up this way:“When I see 18- to 22-year-olds making the decision to be better to themselves, to the community and to others … that makes my job worthwhile.”
Wednesday, May. 30, 2012
Greek life: More and more, it’s about service
UNCC fraternities, sororities find numerous ways to help in community
Charlene Price-Patterson is a freelance writer. Have a story idea for Charlene? Contact her at CPPUniversityCity@gmail.com.
The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.
Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email firstname.lastname@example.org to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.Read moreRead less