I originally intended to write a long-winded post on how AXΣ is a great fraternity with interesting traditions and many opportunities for networking and outreach, etc…. but if you’ve shown enough interest in the fraternity to read this blog post, then I’m guessing you’ve probably heard that already. And if you haven’t, ask any brother. I’m sure she or he would be more than glad to tell you. What I want to write about is what you can’t learn from going to our website or reading a brochure. I’m going to write a bit about my own experiences pledging AXΣ last semester, and how my life has changed since then.
At the beginning of my junior year, one of my greatest fears was that I wouldn’t have any “chem buddies.” I only knew two people in my major, and at most another handful by name. How would I survive the notorious honors p-chem problem sets and CHEM 303 lab reports? My friends insisted that I’d be fine – that the difficulty of the classes would probably force us together, but I remained skeptical and convinced that without friends in my major, I would fail my classes… Luckily, I never had to find out. Now, when I walk through the halls of Baker, it’s impossible not to stop and greet at least one new friend. I’ll give myself a little credit, but to give credit where it’s due, I have met some of my best friends/study-buddies/advice givers through joining Alpha Chi Sigma.
I’m one of those unfortunate people that happens to be acutely aware that they are both shy and awkward (I’m convinced that people who are shy but agreeable or (obliviously) awkward but outgoing have it better…), and honestly I never would have rushed if it weren’t for a decent amount of peer pressure – a shout-out to Marty and Alex if you guys read this. But the brotherhood of Alpha Chi Sigma is an exceptionally warm and welcoming community. Just by joining, you already have so much in common with your fellow fraternity brothers – a love for chemistry and science, a love for your fellow scientists, the objects and principles that bind together the members of AXΣ, and probably a handful of experiences and stories that come from the rushing and pledging process. There’s no pressure to be formal or make small talk – we’d rather gossip about professors than chat about the weather (why yes, indeed it is cold). And when someone asks you about your summer research, not only are they most likely genuinely interested (unlike your hotelie freshman roommate), but they’ll probably actually understand and appreciate what you’re talking about. And of course, as a fraternity, there are parties where we all join together and try our best to drink away our psets and lab reports…
So seriously, come to our rush events. Meet brothers. Even consider joining Alpha Chi Sigma. You won’t regret it.