Homecoming Exclusive?


It’s Saturday morning of Homecoming weekend and campus is buzzing.  Alumni wander the streets, reminiscing on their glory days while determined dog owners dress their four-legged friends in crazy costumes for a chance to win the elusive title of Best in Show at the Bulldog Beauty Contest.

Students from Greek houses get a chance to add to the Butler University legacy by participating in different events throughout the weekend.  From chariot races to the Homecoming parade, it’s not unusual to see proud Greeks sporting their letters and hyping the crowds.

For first-year students, commuters and students not affiliated with any Greek house, there are options as well.

The university pairs sororities and fraternities with residence halls and campus apartments in an attempt to involve everyone in the festivities of Homecoming.  But are they successful?

For sophomore Maria Rapisarda, the answer is no.

“I don’t like how [Homecoming] is a mostly Greek event,” she said.  “It makes people who aren’t Greek feel very excluded.”

Rapisarda suggested there should be more opportunities for independent students to get involved, such as having every residence hall decorate its own lawn or having an online voting poll for themes.

“If you’re going to have it be Greeks paired with non-Greeks, they should have it so that those people who aren’t Greek have a way to be involved and showcase their skills,” Rapisarda said.

Sophomore Chelsea Yedinak said that there was another issue with Homecoming weekend being dominated by Greek life: the lack of information reaching the student body.

“I never know when anything is happening because it’s not publicized for anyone until the day before,” Yedinak said.

That’s when I realized that I also had no clue what was going on during Homecoming weekend.  I heard the theme was cartoons, but I did not know what that meant. I did not know which houses were doing what, or even what house I was paired with as a student in a campus apartment.

A quick search of the Butler website for “Homecoming 2015” led me to a page that listed the schedule for the weekend but provided no more information on what I could do to get involved in the events.

The Butler Connection was a little more helpful, clearly listing the theme and pairings between Greek houses and residence halls.  It even kindly told me when the next Homecoming event but never what that event was.

“There needs to be more publicity about it so we know about it sooner,” Yedinak said.  “It needs to be the kind of thing that’s in the (Butler) Connection every day.”

Sophomore Catie Liggett, member of Delta Gamma sorority, said before she was in a Greek house, her knowledge of the Homecoming events was limited.

“Last year, living in Ross (Hall), I never really knew what was going on,” Liggett said.  “You would kind of hear about the events, but you never had enough information to want to go.”

Maybe the issue with students feeling left out of Homecoming isn’t a question of exclusion from Greek events by Greek students, but rather a problem with the lack of information being distributed from the university itself.

Butler should utilize advertising and social media posts more in an effort to get every student on campus involved in Homecoming festivities. If that happens, the amount of people at events– and those actively participating in those events– would increase.

After all, isn’t that the Butler Way?