KELLY BARRETT / THE EAGLE
AU’s Greek Week will be held as a philanthropic event for the first time, according to Inter-fraternity Council Vice President Carter Gibson.
The goal of Greek Week — occurring from Thursday until Sunday next week — is “[t]o promote unity among all fraternities and sororities on campus, to improve the image of Greek Life at American University, to raise money for charity and to celebrate the collective efforts and successes of Greek Life’s continued philanthropic efforts,” according to Gibson’s written Greek Week proposal to the Residence Hall Association.
By making the event philanthropic, Greek Week will be a more legitimate event on campus, said National Pan-Hellenic Council Greek Liaison Alana Rudkin.
Fraternities and sororities will merge into teams and compete in events to earn points. The team with the most points will win $1,000 to donate to their preferred charities.
As of Sunday evening, colony Zeta Psi was in the lead with 124 points, and fraternity Phi Sigma Kappa was at the bottom with zero points, according to Gibson and the Greek Week Facebook page.
Greek Week, usually a series of events held over seven days, was trimmed down to four days this year. Gibson and Rudkin thought they would get a better turnout if the majority of the events were held over the weekend.
“We thought that one week can be too long and dragged out,” Rudkin said. “The weekend is better; more people can go.”
Due to logistical problems, Gibson and Rudkin had just over two months to plan the event, according to Rudkin.
“The planning that needed to be done wasn’t done — that’s the bottom line,” Gibson said. “[Coordinator of Greek Life] Curtis Burrill told us there wouldn’t be a Greek Week.”
The former IFC vice president resigned early without having started planning for Greek Week, leaving Gibson to make the arrangements later than usual.
The schedule includes an opening ceremony, a screening of the movie “Van Wilder,” participation in the Stay Awake and Dance charity event, greek olympics, Alpha Kappa Psi’s “Dress for Success,” a greek gala and the closing ceremonies, according to the Greek Week Facebook page.
In an effort to include the whole AU student body, only two events — the olympics and the gala — will be closed to the general AU community. Gibson said he hopes this will show non-greeks that greeks are there to support all of AU, not just the fraternities and sororities involved.
Additionally, Greek Week will have a strict no-alcohol policy after last year’s events were deemed a failure, according to Gibson.
During the 2009 greek olympics, an individual spontaneously threw slime at a member of Public Safety, prompting its premature end. The slime was not part of a specific event, but for fun, Gibson said. Due to the sheer number of people present, no one knows who was responsible.
“In the past Greek Week has been bad,” he said. “People had no incentive to be sober.”
In order to prevent some of last year’s problems — such as high rates of underage drinking and an individual who suffered a compound fracture — the IFC and National Pan-Hellenic Council will be acting as moderators, Gibson said. If individuals show up intoxicated, they will be expelled from participating in Greek Week, Rudkin said.
Gibson predicted those who regularly participate in and contribute to greek life culture will adhere to the rules, while “others are in for a rude awakening.” Overall, however, people have been receptive to a stricter policy of sobriety.
“We’re actually really, really surprised by the amount of support we’ve gotten ...We’re all policing each other,” he said. “This is a collaborative effort.”