Service is an integral part of Greek life, says the graduate assistant advisor to Heidelberg’s nine fraternities and societies. During their new member education process last month, all of the Greek groups participated in community service projects in Tiffin. On Saturday, Feb. 12, more than 100 new pledges and active members landed at a dozen local agencies for their day of service.
“Unfortunately, Greeks are still stereotyped... It's nice to have a day when we can send new members and active members out together to serve the Tiffin community,” says Mike Giacalone, GA advisor to Greek Life.
“The new members worked hard and it seems they got something positive out of working at the various places they went to,” says junior Matt Echelberry, vice president of membership for Greek Council and a member of Sigma Tau Nu. “Greek life enjoys giving back to the Tiffin community. Philanthropy is a major reason why we exist.”
Jaime Anglin, a member of Kappa Psi Omega, agrees. “It was a great experience interacting with some of the elderly residents from the Seneca House. Simply having a conversation with the residents taught me more about the Tiffin community and gave me a different perspective.”
Besides the service day, the Greek groups on campus hold their own events. From charity basketball games to benefits for the American Heart Association and Habitat for Humanity, the students connect with the community as they give back. They also assist with highway cleanups, leaf raking, Christmas for disadvantaged youth, senior citizens, teens and other local organizations.
“The purpose of these events is simple,” says Excelsior member Joshua Cunningham. “We want to give back to the Heidelberg community, the Tiffin community and the greater Ohio community, and we want to represent Heidelberg well.”
“Greek life has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life not only because of the life long bonds I have created with my brothers, but because it has gotten me much more involved in the community,” says Wayne Salsbury, a member of Nu Sigma Alpha. “It has made me realize that community service is a very rewarding experience that everyone should participate in.”