Note: This is a student project from a course affiliated with the Ethnography of the University Initiative. EUI supports faculty development of courses in which students conduct original research on their university, and encourages students to think about colleges and universities in relation to their communities and within larger national and global contexts.

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Title:Why Do Students Join Greek Organizations?
Author(s):Flores, Patricia M.
Greek System
EPS500 F07
Abstract:The Greek System here at the university really has an impact on student life both in the lives of Greeks and non-Greeks. Little research has been conducted on Greeks of different ethnicities and I believe it is important to see what are these differences and similarities among all Greeks to get a better perception of where there are gaps of understanding. When I say understanding, I mean understanding how these students perceive themselves, their organization, their school, and the rest of the student body. Hopefully this paper will contribute towards finding ways that the university can use to bridge these gaps so students can learn to understand each other better and discontinue isolating themselves from the rest of the student body. For this study, one male and one female from four ethnic groups were interviewed, so there were two African American, two Asian, two Caucasian, and two Latino students. All of my participants were undergraduates that were members of the Greek System. Four came from the United Greek Council, two from the Black Greek Council, one from the Panhellenic Council, and one from the Interfraternity Council. The purpose was to get the point of view of females and males from different ethnic groups that are in Greek organizations here at U of I.
Issue Date:2008-02-22
Course / Semester:EPS 500pf1: Race and Ethnography: A Study of the University, Prof. Priscilla Fortier. As a member of this course students join a campus-wide learning community in which the University of Illinois is being explored ethnographically. Students begin the course by thinking about what the university is, as well as about race and ethnicity as phenomena within the university's narratives. One area of concentration will be "ethnography," and students learn and practice the basic skills of observation, interviewing, and writing as an ethnographer. They complete several relatively short assignments that are intended to help them develop these skills, as well as one larger ethnographic project on the University. The latter allows students to explore an aspect of the university that has to do with as issue of race or ethnicity. The course syllabus is available at:
Publication Status:unpublished
Date Available in IDEALS:2008-02-22

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

  • Student Communities and Culture
    The university offers an extraordinary opportunity to study and document student communities, life, and culture. This collection includes research on the activities, clubs, and durable social networks that comprise sometimes the greater portion of the university experience for students.

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