Reflecting on Greek Life at Dickinson

Greek Life Poster webThursday, November 19, 2009
Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, 7:00 p.m.

Relying on a local targeted survey of Dickinson Greek and non-Greek students, Ann Hanson, former dean of student affairs, Middlebury College, will lead a moment of reflection on the positive and negative consequences of Greek Life on the Dickinson community. The goal is to promote discussion and dialogue on a significant dimension of the Dickinson experience.

This program was created by The Clarke Forum Student Board.

Co-sponsored by the Division of Student Development.

Topical Background
The importance of Greek Life on college campuses is a hotly contested issue nationwide. Some argue that fraternities and sororities are time-honored traditions that foster friendship, leadership, and service, while others feel that Greek Life is an outdated social structure that detracts from college life today. This debate is very much dependent on the campus climate that is unique to each individual college campus. Therefore, it is difficult to generalize whether Greek Life is a positive or a negative factor without first examining its unique influence on specific college campuses.

At Dickinson, “The Greek community is advised by the Dean of Students Office. Fraternities are governed by the Interfraternity Council (originally established in 1859) and sororities are governed by the College Panhellenic Association (originally established in 1907). These groups are the local organizations charged with fulfilling the objectives of the North-American Interfraternity Conference and National Panhellenic Conference. These groups guide, support, develop and regulate their respective communities, and enforce College and individual organization policies. The Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Association promote academic excellence and opportunities for engaged learning among all fraternity and sorority members in addition to sponsoring social and service activities throughout the academic year.” (Source: POLICY IV-H-3: Greek Life)

With the recent creation of the Greek Judicial Board and Greek Life Evaluation Committee on our own college campus, this is an excellent opportunity to assess our own “Distinctively Dickinson” experiences regarding Greek Life.

About the Speaker
Ann Craig Hanson is the former dean of student affairs at Middlebury College where she was responsible for developing and implementing policies related to student life. She received a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Stanford University, a master’s degree in administration, planning and social policy from Harvard University and a doctorate in higher education from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Throughout her career as an administrator at both Dartmouth and Middlebury Colleges, Hanson worked on all aspects of student affairs including Greek life and coeducational social houses. Her professional experiences within higher education enabled her to see the successes and challenges of Greek life on college campuses as well as its adaptation to campus life in the 21st century.