Theta Chi here. My experience was much different than most it seems. I had no intention to join a fraternity. I began making friends with some guys
that I would play basketball with.
One day, they invited me to a cookout. It was at the fraternity house. Everyone was nice and I had a great time. The thing that stood out to me was
that not one person mentioned anything about rushing the fraternity. There was no pressure.
A month later, I decided to pledge. Honestly, I did it for the parties and to live in a pretty cool house with low rent. Once I pledged, I made it
known that I would not put up with any kind of hazing or somebody would get punched in the mouth. I was assured that they banned hazing years before
and sure enough, they were telling the truth.
The men in this fraternity were from mostly blue collar families, myself included. We did have 2-3 guys that were from affluent families but they sure
didn't act like it. It was a small chapter of 20 or so when I joined. We were very tight knit, and had to work together to overcome some financial and
PR problems with the fraternity.
What did I get out of it? In my case, I got life long friends and irreplaceable memories. I learned how to be a leader after volunteering for
committee chairs and eventually became chapter president. I got over my fear of public speaking. I gained confidence in myself and became comfortable
with who I was. I learned to take personal responsibility as a result of living in the chapter house and taking care of it. I learned to co-exist with
many different personalities, skills I still use today. As president, our chapter grew in numbers to 40+, we secured funding for chapter house
renovations, we still upheld a strong stance on no hazing and we made a positive image for ourselves in both the greek community as well as the
university. We were involved in many charities and raised money and awareness for them.
Yes, we partied pretty hard. Yes, a lot of us were power drinkers. The university was known as the "party school" so I'd party just as hard with
non-greeks as I did fellow greeks.
Would I do it again? At this particular chapter? Absolutely. That said, I know of plenty of other fraternities and even other chapters of Theta Chi
that I would never join. All chapters are different. You can't judge all of them by a few.
I did a few threads a while back on haunted Athens, Ohio, home to Ohio University. Here is the one that mentions my fraternity house.
Theta Chi ghost