Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Sororities and Fraternities

Being a UK seller on an American site like Etsy is a steep learning curve sometimes, so when I was commissioned to knit meerkats in Kappa Kappa Gamma sweaters I needed help!

Knitting the sweaters wasn't as difficult as trying to understand what a sorority or fraternity actually *is*, but my Etteam friends came to the rescue.

I started off by knowing only what I'd seen at the movies. One friend summed it up like this: "If you are on a sports team and in a fraternity you drink a lot and pick on the nerdy less fortunate fraternity guys. You only date the cheerleaders who are in the sororities who eventually end up leaving you for the nerdy guy you used to pick on."

There's more to it than that though.

Sororoties and Fraternities are organizations that students are asked to join when in college. The frat or sorority have a house where all the gals or guys live, and your fellow members are your sorority sisters and the connections generally last for life.

First there is what is called "rush" week. If you are interested in being in a sorority or frat you go around and meet all the people at all the "houses" during rush week to find out what they are all about, where their focus is. Many frats and sororities are also very charitable and/or service minded. Besides their academic focuses, they usually have a charity that they do a lot of work with, or pledge a certain amount of service to the local community. After rush week, you "pledge" to which sorority you want to be involved with, and they put you through a trial period to see if you fit in. If you are accepted there is an initiation ceremony, and you are in.

Another correspondent shared her feelings:

"My sorority is my home. It's my family. I met my best friends there, and I can only hope that they will be my bridesmaids some day. We all care so much about each other, that's sisterhood. We have sisterhood events, like going to the movies and social events where we pair up with a fraternity. All in all it keeps college fun. It's so easy to miss out on life with the pressures of school and work. My sorority is my little slice of heaven, it's exactly what I need it to be."

I still can't *really* understand what it must be like, but I think it must be a little like being in a supportive Etsy team like Etteam is for me. Want to join us? Come and meet us here on our chat thread or check out our Yahoo group

(and of course if you want a meerkat in a college sweater, you know where to come!)


Unknown said...

Delightful blog post, Nifty!! Your little kats in the frat sweaters are absolutely fabulous!!



Midnightcoiler said...

Interesting comparison. When it comes to support, our team is there for each other!

I had no idea that sororities and fraternities were only a US thing. Guess I never really thought much about it.

Your meerkats look adorable in those sweaters!

jrotem@rotemgear.com said...

I was so not a sorority type but I love the "Greek" meerkats! "Revenge of the Meerkats," anyone? :D

Jaci said...

Nifty, these little guys are so cute, they are bound to bring in more commissions! What one sister has.... :)

Nicole's Homemade Treats...The Blog said...

Your Meerkats came out AWESOME! I was in a sorority in college, it was a blast! Interesting blog post btw!

YellowBugBoutique said...

Nifty- I love the little sweaters!

You are right ETTeam and sororities have a lot in common- a small group within a large group where you can feel connected and supported- and have some fun....maybe you could knit us matching ETTeam sweaters :)

Unknown said...

See I have learnt something new today! Kx

sassypackrat said...

It never occurred to me that sororities and fraternities were an American thing. I just thought they were called something else in the UK.

Geeks like me never fit into that culture in college but that's o.k. cause it's not for everyone and really only a small percentage of people actually get in.

Heather Leavers said...

This has been so interesting for me. so often I've assumed you guys all know what I'm talking about - now it turns out you all assumed I knew what *you* were talking about. LOL

Linda said...

Nifty, I hope I can always depend on your meerkats to cheer me up! Wonderful blog!

FishStikks said...

Nifty, the frat kats are soo adorable!! Love their little sweaters!

Having never gone to college I unfortunately have to rely on movies for my information too, hence the mangled quote/ideaology from Revenge of the Nerds, hehe.

Heather Leavers said...

LOL Shelby sorry to delete your comment - but I don't think GAP make sweaters for meerkats, otherwise I'd leave your link :-)