Greek life grounds itself in inclusive values

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“We aren’t bringing our boys into manhood,” Denise Giesbers, advisor for Pacific University Greek Life, said in reference to a video created by Chad Prather on the topic of modern masculinity.

Giesbers, however, was talking about masculinity and fraternities across the nation and as expected she had some amazing things to say. According to Giesbers, fraternities have always been inclusive.  

She explained how Greek Life has always been portrayed as, but never been about, party animal jocks who have little to no self-control.

“Fraternity used to be gender-neutral,” Giesbers said. “The idea of a sorority wasn’t even introduced until the fifties.”

Then why is there such a big debate over what a fraternity is and what it is not?

According to Giesbers, there is a difference between a fraternity and a “frat.” The frats are the wild partiers people often see in the movies. Greek fraternities across the whole country share similarities but hold differing values.

All Greek chapters here at Pacific are based on the four pillars of scholarship, leadership, friendship and service. “Greek life is here to support people finding a group they belong to,” said Giesbers.

What is the discussion about masculinity really about? It seems like Greek life has become wrapped up in society trying to understand what masculinity actually is, so the video Giesbers referenced started to make sense.

The older men in the video “We Aren’t Bring our Boys Into Manhood” spoke about how masculinity is about respect and treating people with the dignity they deserve. They continued to condemn the childish mentality that so many men have these days. The sense that being a man is about how “macho” you are, not about being a good respectful person.

Though it may have taken a while, it appears as if society is piecing together what it really means to be masculine. Students should actively monitor the changes that will continue to affect all Greek chapters, including Pacific University’s.


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