Sigma Sigma Rho

The South Asian Interest Sorority, Sigma Sigma Rho held it's probate unveiling outside Memorial Hall, allowing the new freshmen recruits to become official sisters of the sorority, in Athens, Ga., on Thursday November 15, 2012. The new members of Sigma Sigma Rho practiced dance routines for two week before the unveiling and their initiation performance. (Photo/ Randy Schafer, randy.drum.schafer@gmail.com)

There’s another side to Greek life other than just the houses in Greek Park or on Milledge Avenue.

The smaller multicultural organizations of the Multicultural Greek Council and the National Pan-Hellenic Council are also at the University. Their presence is stifled by their smaller populations and bank accounts.

“We’re a minority to begin with, and minorities are a small part of campus,” University student Curtis Rau said. “We’re still trying to make a name for ourselves and trying to get out there more.”

Rau, a junior sports management major from Warner Robins, is the president of Lambda Theta Phi, a Latino fraternity that’s part of the University’s MGC. He said it has been difficult for members of MGC to put the names of their organizations out there because of the many differences between them and larger Greek chapters.

MGC is made up of 11 chapters and has roughly 150 members. While many Greek chapters of the Panhellenic and Interfraternity councils have more than 100 members, Rau said each MGC organization has between 10 and 40 people.

Kevin Moriles, president of the Asian-interest Lambda Phi Epsilon, said another challenge in getting attention for MGC is the small amount of diversity on campus.

“If you go to Georgia State or Georgia Tech, there’s a very strong ethnic base there, which is why their opinions are more well-known to their campuses,” the junior biology major from Jonesboro said. “Here, we don’t have nearly that number of ethnic-based people.”

The culture of MGC is also a lot different.

“We focus a lot more on traditional aspects,” Rau said. “We incorporate a lot of stuff from our individual cultures. My fraternity is a Latino fraternity, so we do certain Latino traditions. It’s just a lot different than the way [others] do it.”

Anthony Prasetio, president of MGC, said members of multicultural Greek organizations don’t let people outside of their organization wear their letters.

“We hold our letters very dear to us,” said the senior biology major from Savannah. “We are the ones who earned the letters, not anyone else. We also strictly adhere to the policy of not having other colors than founding colors on our letters. It’s a sign of respect to our organization and to the founders that came before us.”

But Rau said that doesn’t make MGC members any less Greek than Panhellenic or IFC members.

MGC organizations might not be known for hosting parties or collaborating on large projects, but Prasetio said it’s still important for them to put their name out there.

The council has been around since fall of 2004.

“We’re very young compared to other Greek councils,” he said. “It’s harder for us to garner an interest, especially to take in potential members. They see us as not part of Greek culture. People don’t realize that Greek culture encompasses more than just a house. It goes far beyond that.”

To make a bigger name for themselves, members of MGC hosted a car bash during the week of the Georgia vs. Tennessee game this semester. The $350 they raised went to the Boys and Girls Club of Athens.

Rau, who was elected as internal vice president of MGC for January, would like to promote stronger relationships within MGC so the organizations can collaborate on big events, such as the car bash and other mixers, more often.

But for now, they’re going to focus on showing people that they’re “real Greeks.”

“In the end, we’re all Greek,” Rau said. “We all have our own traditions — our own forms of induction. They’re all important to us. In my opinion, we all share the same characteristic that we all are Greek. That’s a bond we can all share with each other. But I don’t think everyone feels the same way.”