A group of South Asian students interested in Greek Life didn’t really feel like there was an organization on Mercer’s campus that suited them. They had heard about Sigma Sigma Rho and Delta Epsilon Psi, two South Asian Greek organizations that are located at other universities all over Georgia.
They researched, planned, pitched and worked with Campus and Greek Life. Now, those two organizations have been granted permission to expand on Mercer’s campus.
“I believe that adding these two groups is good for Mercer and is a major milestone for our Greek community,” said Dean of Students Douglas Pearson.
Pearson said he plans to find ways to increase the overall experience and number of students participating in Greek Life in the next few years.
“Adding Sigma Sigma Rho and Delta Epsilon Psi should help us to achieve this goal by providing incoming and existing students with more diversity and options,” Pearson said.
According to Campus Life, Mercer will recognize Sigma Sigma Rho and Delta Epsilon Psi on campus immediately and they have a one-year probationary period in which to demonstrate that they are viable and make a positive contribution to our community.
They will be a part of a new council on campus known as The Multicultural Greek Council. They will be the first two organizations to be a part of the council, but this change opens the door for more cultural Greek organizations to establish themselves on Mercer’s campus.
On Jan. 29, 2017, the Campus Life and Greek Life offices hosted the Greek Leadership Retreat and representatives from each council and chapter, including Sigma Sigma Rho, were in attendance.
“During a goal setting session, students indicated a strong desire for unity and collaboration,” said Scotty Rainwater, Assistant Director of Campus Life.
“It is the hope of Campus Life and Student Affairs that the inclusion of multicultural Greek organizations to our Greek community and the creation of a Multicultural Greek Council (MGC) will help to foster a sense of unity and appreciation for the diversity of Mercer University,” he said.
Both organizations have interest groups running and are beginning the organization process. If there are students interested, they should contact the Greek Life office, where they’ll be put in touch with the appropriate person for more information.
“The Greek community at Mercer is a great place to learn and grow as a leader,” Rainwater said. “We are excited to be offering more options for students.”
The national and regional offices of the organizations are also excited about the new expansion. They’ve been extremely hands-on throughout the process.
“The interest group has worked so hard to collaborate communications between the National Executive Board and Mercer Greek Life,” said Jovita Pinto, Sigma Sigma Rho Southeast Expansion Director, in an email. “Their commitment to this organization is remarkable and I cannot wait to see how they integrate our values and principles into the Mercer community.”
Pinto says she believes Mercer will be a fine addition to the already established Georgia chapters, including University of Georgia, Georgia Institute of Technology and Georgia State University.
“Delta Epsilon Psi was founded on Oct. 1, 1998 on the campus of the University of Texas, and since has grown to become the largest South-Asian interest fraternity in the nation,” said National President Bilal Badruddin in an email. “We are extremely excited to expand to Mercer specifically, because we will be working to also build a Multicultural Greek Council.”
Badruddin said representation on college campuses are extremely important, especially in Greek Life, and he can’t wait to see new faces at the fraternity/sorority table at Mercer.