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Greeks and athletes battle for time

November 8, 2013

Students who are actively involved in organizations have a high chance of being a member of Greek Life or Division III athletics. According to the Office of Student Involvement, 25 percent of currently enrolled Monmouth students were members of a Greek organization and 32 percent were members of an athletic team at Monmouth in 2012. A healthy majority of the student body belongs to one of the two but few wear both letters and numbers.

Students involved in both Greek Life and varsity athletics realize participation in both can be demanding.

“I’ve found that both groups have a built in support system,” said Alpha Xi Delta member and track field standout, Erin Maul, “and when you become a part of either group, you’re automatically part of a family.”

Junior Taylor Smith, a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma and softball said, “Both groups of girls are there for me through thick and thin and college wouldn’t be the same without softball or Kappa.”

A sophomore soccer player and Kappa, Allie DeAvril echoes the sentiment, “I have grown inseparable bonds with both my sisters and my teammates that I would not trade for anything,”

Another reason many students aren’t donning letters and numbers may be because there are not enough free hours in a day to be both Greek and athlete. A 2011 NCAA survey of student athletes found Division III male athletes devote an average of 29.2 hours a week on their sport and female athletes spent 28.9. On a daily basis that translates to four hours of sport a day, a recommend minimum of seven hours of sleep, about two hours of class daily and an additional four hours of studying as recommend by Monmouth. It could potentially be seen as overwhelming to spend the leftover time on a daunting commitment like a Greek organization. “Some people come here mainly to be student athletes and Greek life is more of an option you consider after already becoming a student here at MC,” Smith said.

There’s no question that freshmen come to Monmouth and are searching for a group of friends to belong to and it stands to reason that if someone is satisfied with the social group they’re in then they’re unlikely to join another group that fulfills similar needs. “A big reason freshman join Greek life is to meet new people and find friends when coming to this new place,” said DeAvril. “I think that many freshmen in sports, especially fall sports, disregard Greek life because they found their friends in their sports.”

While the two offer different things, teach you different things and get you to meet different people, what they have in common is perhaps what’s most important.

“Obviously there are a lot of differences between the groups, but when it comes down to it, I’m looking for people who can support me with whatever is going on in my life, ” Maul said, “and I truly feel like I have found that support system in both my track team and my sorority.”

Cameron Line
Sports Editor

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