At the University of Maine, Greek life is a big part of campus culture and the student body community. There are 16 fraternities and 8 sororities, with over 1,000 students participating overall. Greek life began at UMaine back in 1874, offering students the opportunity to make lasting friendships and support their community for decades now.
Tau Kappa Epsilon
Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) is one of UMaine’s 16 fraternities. Ryan Perry, a second-year journalism and media studies student at UMaine and a member for two years, appreciates the diversity of interests you can find in TKE.
“We have guys who are Republicans or Democrats, introverts or extroverts,” Perry said. “There are guys into sports, video games and the list goes on.”
It is easy to see why long lasting friendships can be made in a fraternity.
“My favorite memory with TKE was living in the house,” said Perry. “The days when guys came up to you and wanted to watch a movie, go out to eat or even just simply hang out is what I have cherished the most. It is the little things that have led me to the lasting friendships I have made.”
Each fraternity and sorority has a philanthropy, and at TKE, they support St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Live music streams and 24 hour gaming streams have been used to support this organization.
Last week, TKE finished out its yearly rush week. With everything able to be back in person this semester, they were very successful in recruiting new members.
“Last year, the first time the guys saw the house wasn’t until after they got their bids and it made the whole process a lot harder to sell the fraternity and understand why it is such a cool place to be at,” said Perry. “This year back in person was amazing. I don’t know the exact number of bids we had, but I believe it was about 25. If every single one of them gets through, it will double our fraternity size in one semester.”
This week, TKE’s bids are received and the pledge deal process will take place. For homecoming on Oct. 16, they will be having their band play live. TKE members have also helped out with the blood drive this past week. Future renovations will be done on their fraternity house, involving redoing their bathrooms and getting their kitchen up and operating again.
One of the eight sororities at UMaine is Delta Zeta (DZ). UMaine second-year nursing student, Katie Libby, is entering her second year with DZ this semester.
For Libby, the lasting friendships she has made has been the most valuable takeaway from being in DZ.
“My favorite memory was from last year and it was the Big Little event,” said Libby. “Figuring out who my Big was the best time. I didn’t know I was going to get her, and she was my number one pick. This year so far, my favorite memory was bid day because I was able to be a Rho Gamma for formal recruitment. I wasn’t able to join my sorority and was disaffiliated back in August, so bid day was great because I finally had all my sisters back.”
Delta Zeta’s philanthropy is for The Painted Turtle, as well as for the Starkey Hearing Foundation, SeriousFun Children’s Network and the American Society for Deaf Children.
“Since this is an international sorority, members can travel all over the world and help give people in need hearing aids,” said Libby. “We also go to The Painted Turtle camp where you can volunteer for children that are deaf. That is one of the main reasons I wanted to join Delta Zeta, is so I could be a part of that camp,”
Delta Zeta is currently doing continuous open bidding, or informal rush, for those who didn’t go through the formal recruitment process but would still like to join a sorority. The rush chair of DZ can be contacted to meet some of the girls and get to know each other. If it seems like a fit, then they are able to give out a bid.