Unity through diversity
Greek life fosters diversity through Multicultural Greek Council.
The Multicultural Greek Council is the newest of four councils that comprise UGA’s Greek Life office, an arm of Student Affairs that serves to advise social fraternities and sororities.
Founded in 2004 by the Delta Phi Lambda, the first multicultural Greek organization at UGA, along with Sigma Beta Rho and Lambda Phi Epsilon, the MGC currently consists of 12 chapters—six fraternities and six sororities—that champion the motto “unity through diversity.”
While the 12 fraternities and sororities were founded under particular cultural interests, the organizations created and have sustained an ethnically diverse environment that encourages cultural awareness and diversity amongst their members and across UGA.
“We are proud to be an extremely diverse organization with sisters of all ethnic and racial backgrounds,” said Chandni Patel, fourth-year biochemistry and molecular biology major and vice president of Delta Phi Omega sorority.
Being a member of a multicultural organization opened the door for leadership and volunteer opportunities, and a deeper connection to UGA, she said.
“I can attest for my whole sorority when I say that MGC has remarkably influenced our college experience at UGA,” Patel said. “Not only to encourage our relationship with the university, but also to strengthen our relationship with other student organizations.”
The multicultural Greek organizations not only define themselves by their diverse membership, but also by their commitment to philanthropy and engagement with each other. Each organization has their own designated philanthropy and also volunteers to raise funds and awareness for the MGC’s major cause, the Boys & Girls Club of Athens.
“We’re not exclusive (to specific ethnicities) and have members from different cultural backgrounds,” said Kimberly Lai, third-year health promotion major and incoming MGC president.
Lai, a member of Delta Phi Lambda, said the cultural background of each organization fosters interest in and awareness of specific cultural community needs that can be overlooked on such a big campus.
MGC fraternity and sorority’s cultural backgrounds often serve as an impetus for their chosen philanthropy, Lai said.
Delta Phi Lambda, an Asian-interest sorority that was first chartered at UGA, focuses their philanthropy efforts on osteoporosis, a bone disease that increases the risk of broken bones and disproportionately affects Asian women.
Since its 2004 creation, the MGC has grown from three to 12 organizations and Lai said the quick growth gives UGA students more options to join culturally diverse organizations.
As president of the youngest Greek council, Lai hopes to initiate more collaboration with the other three councils. She said philanthropy programs like the third annual superhero-themed 5K marathon—a Boys & Girls Club fundraiser—show UGA the unique approach that MGC brings to campus.
— Erica Hensley, News Service