The Michigan Daily - Thursday, January 21, 1993 - Page 3
Sorority members attempt to dispel stereotypes
Oby Tim Greimel
Daily Staff Reporter
When picturing a sorority sister,
the Saturday Night Live skit with the
infamous line "Delta Delta Delta.
Can I help ya? Help ya? Help ya?"
may come to mind.
Yet members of sororities - al-
most one-quarter of University fe-
male students - are quick to defend
themselves and categorize such me-
*dia portrayals in Saturday Night
Live and Animal House as unfair
"People will stereotype any
group. It's unfortunate because you
should look at the individual," said
Delta Zeta president Jenny Rifken.
"There are so many facets to an or-
ganization. You shouldn't generalize
because you might miss something."
As winter rush week begins,
members of the Greek system hope
that rushees keep in mind that these
stereotypes are generally imper-
sonal, unjustified and inaccurate.
"A lot of people think sorority
girls are easy. (But) I know a lot of
girls who are moral," said a sorority
In response to claims that soror-
ity members are uninvolved and
shallow, sorority representatives
point out that the Greek system
raises about $50,000 a year for char-
ities, including SafeHouse and the
Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.
"We're people who have outside
commitments, are well-rounded, and
are responsible," said Alpha Gamma
Delta senior Cynthia McIntyre.
Participants in the Greek system
say that there is variety within each
sorority and that stereotypes do not
adequately describe specific
"When you have 120 people,
there's no way all of them are going
to be the same even if sororities do
attract generally like-minded peo-
ple," said Susie Dupree, a first-year
student and Chi Omega pledge.
Some students, like Alpha
Gamma Delta member Chris
'People will stereotype any group. There are so
many facets to an organization. You shouldn't
generalize because you might miss something.
- Jenny Rifken
Delta Zeta president
Tompkins, said that although sorori-
ties may attract people with similar
interests, it is impossible to get to
know people well enough during the
few hours of rush to get a sorority
full of people who are exactly the
Ellen Kraft of Alpha Epsilon Phi
said that her house has the reputation
of being a "Jewish house" because a
majority of the members are Jewish.
She added, "There are people (in it)
who aren't Jewish. We don't judge
people based on that."
Junior Cori Jakubiak, who is
president of Kappa Kappa Gamma,
said that sororities also provide op-
portunities to meet people from dif-
ferent walks of life.
"I've gotten to know minorities a
lot better (through my sorority) than
I have on campus otherwise. We
have African American, Native
American, and Jewish members in
our sorority," she said.
Due to the frequency with which
members of the Greek system are
stereotyped, some sorority members
said they feel self-conscious wearing
their letters. In extreme situations
some even avoid wearing them, es-
pecially for the first few days of
class when first impressions are
The Greek system abounds with
stereotypes about individual sorori-
ties as well as stereotypes about the
Jennifer Spiegelman of Alpha
Epsilon Phi is one sorority member
who partly blames criticisms of the
Greek system on those in the system.
"Houses talk about each other.
It's the problem with the Greek sys-
tem. As long as stereotyping goes on
within it, we'll be looked down
upon," she said.
Sororities credit stereotyping to
outdated reputations, misunderstand-
ings and a lack of tolerance.
"People with friends in the Greek
systei don't stereotype (the system)
as much as people without such
friends," said Rifken.
Some sorority representatives
said that people form stereotypes
based on isolated instances.
"If they see one person in the
Greek system who rubs them the
wrong way they generalize (their
expefience) to the whole system,"
said senior Michelle Tomaszyski,
president of Zeta Tau Alpha.
In the end, respect is the key is-
sue at stake, said junior Beth
Wierzbinski, vice president of fra-
ternity relations for Alpha Chi
"It goes two ways, people in
houses need to respect those who
aren't, and those who aren't in the
Greek system need to respect those
who are - it's a personal decision,"
she said. "Respect what people's
choices are and what they want to
get involved in."
A member of Kappa Alpha
Theta, who wanted to remain
anonymous, said that it is essential
for students to start examining
stereotypes and the Greek system
"It's all individual, you'll find
every kind of person in a sorority.
You need to get beyond what a per-
son looks like, and get to know
them," she said. "I was against
sororities before I rushed. When I
started to get to know each sorority I
saw that they have a lot of people
with different opinions and views."
Campus gas leaks not unusual or
'related says gas company official
by Will McCahill
Daily Crime Reporter
Recent gas leaks around campus
are not related incidents, a gas com-
pany official said last week.
Dave Coulter, a media relations
officer at the Michigan Consolidated
Gas Company (MichCon), said the
ifumber of leaks is not unusually
high - and is, in fact, lower than in
"We don't consider it abnormal,"
According to reports from the
University Department. of Public
Safety (DPS) since the beginning of
the year, gas leaks or the odor of
natural gas have been reported at
several University buildings: the
University Medical Center, the
Northwood IV housing complex, the
Transportation Research Institute
and Mary Markley Residence Hall.
"It is not unusual for more leaks
to be reported in winter than in
summer," Coulter said. "Winter is
the high-usage time for natural gas."
Coulter said the natural gas pipes
in the downtown area are somewhat
older than those in outlying areas of
Ann Arbor. The older pipes are
made of steel and cast iron, and are
more likely to break than the newer
However, MichCon is required to
perform maintenance on the pipes
every year, and is in the process of
replacing the older pipes in the
The replacement process is quite
slow and will probably take years,
University Director of Plant
Operations James Christenson said
he had not been informed of the
He said the buildings on Central
Campus are not heated by natural
gas, but by steam from the central
The plant itself burns gas to help
create the steam, Christenson said.
He added that many Central
Campus buildings do indeed use
natural gas for various purposes -
such as supplying gas for Bunsen
burners used in experiments.
The City of Ann Arbor has not
become involved in any of the re-
ported incidents, since the leaks took
place on University property.
However, Ann Arbor Fire
Department officials said they will
respond to and investigate any gas
leaks and refer them to MichCon.
Bosnian Serbs tentatively accept peace
plan; threat of civil war still remains
DA D D~n- T L*nwsnrr~arynn (ADZ tMA, Rnn CBr. to 'T'L. A -1- - .o 4 h
Starting from scratch
Darren Gergle, a School of Art sophomore, works with clay on a relief sculpture yesterday afternoon.
PALE, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP)
- An assembly of Bosnian Serbs
yesterday accepted a plan to end
Brosnia's civil war, but what ap-
peared to be a step toward peace
may be little more than a tactical
While giving the international
community the "yes" it sought for
the peace plan, the Serbs also
continued to insist for the right to
The Serbs' foes have tentatively
accepted the plan.
The international community had
toia tosna s Lerbs to accept the
plan unconditionally or risk further
isolation and possible military inter-
vention. Rejection would have
doomed the peace talks and in-
Warfare appeared to ease
Muslim-led government forces cap-
tured the Jezero hill in eastern
Bosnia after four days of bitter fight-
ing. Serbs fighters had to withdraw
over the Drina River into the neigh-
boring republic of Serbia, the
Belgrade-based Tanjug news agency
the Muslims can use the hill to
control a large area on the Drina
River border with Serbia.
Lord Owen of the European
Community, who with U.N. envoy
Cyrus Vance drafted the plan, wel-
comed the Bosnian Serbs' decision.
Kemal Muftic, a top aide to
Bosnia's Muslim president, Alija
Izetbegovic, said Serbs accepted the
peace plan because they were under
pressure. "Our experience so far tells
us that whatever they agree to, it
means nothing on the ground," he
Diag kiosk found in
flames; Police say
arson the cause
A cement kiosk located near the
Natural Science building was set in
flames Tuesday by what police have
determined to be arson.
Little or no damage was inflicted
on the kiosk.
The Department of Public Safety
(DPS) received the report Tuesday
afternoon, and after alerting the Ann
Arbor Fire Department (AAFD),
responded to the call.
After extinguishing the burning
flyers and advertisements on the ex-
terior of the kiosk with department
extinguishers, police reports said
flames within the hollow center of
the kiosk appeared to persist.
DPS officers were sent into the
underground ventilation tunnel that
they thought connected to the kiosk.
However, they were unable to find a
Police say they have no suspects
and are unaware of any possible
Two counts of
flashing reported in
On Sunday and Tuesday, DPS
received two reports of indecent ex-
posure on the fourth floor of Harlan
Hatcher Graduate Library.
The suspect is described as a
white male in his late 40s or early
50s, with graying hair, and oval-
Police say the assailant made his
confrontations by pretending to read
a book, waiting for the victim to be
alone, and then exposing himself.
DPS was contacted on both
counts, but upon arrival found the
suspect had fled the area. DPS is
planning to station officers in the
area and investigations of the inci-
dents are continuing.
Late night burglary
reported in West
DPS received a report of forced
entry and attempted burglary around
2:30 a.m. yesterday morning.
Two males reportedly attempted
to break into a room in West Quad's
Chicago House by using a screw-
driver to force the lock on the door.
Housing Officers intercepted the
culprits in action and alerted DPS
officers, who transported the pair to
the police station under Breaking
and Entering charges.
- by Shelley Morrison
Daily Crime Reporter
O AIDS Coalition to Unleash
Power, meeting, East Engineer-
ing Building, Baker-Mandela
Center, 7:30 p.m.
Q Amnesty International, meet-
ing, East Quad, Room 122, 7
Q Circle K, meeting, Michigan
Union, Room 2209,7:30 p.m.
Q Hillel, American Movement for
Israel, meeting, Hillel, 7 p.m.;
Jewish Learning Center: On Lis-
tening to Survivors, Hillel, 7:00-
8:30 p.m.; Project Otzma Infor-
mational Meeting, Hillel, 7p.m.;
Women in the Israeli Army,
Hillel, 8 p.m.
Q Institute of Electrical and Elec-
tronics Engineers, technical
luncheon, EECS Building,
Room 1311,12:30-1:30 p.m.
Q Islamic Circle, meeting, Michi-
gan League, 1st Floor, 6 p.m.
Q Korean Student Association,
meeting, Michigan Union,
Welker Room, 7 p.m.
Q Newman Catholic Student Fel-
lowship, Pastoral Parish Coun-
cil, Saint Mary Student Parish,
331 Thompson St., 7 p.m.
Q Pro-Choice Action, meeting,
MLB, Room B137, 7:30 p.m.
Q Taiwanese American Students
Q Women's Issues Commission,
meeting, Michigan Union,
Room 2909, 8 p.m.
Q Abortion and the Breakdown
of Politics as Usual, Michigan
Union, Anderson Rooms C &
D, 7 p.m.
Q Archaeology and Other Amus-
ing Adventures in Chiapas,
Mexico, Brown Bag, Museum
of Natural History, Room 2009,
Q Aristocratic Dropouts: Alter-
native Lives in the Heian Pe-
riod, Brown Bag Lunch Series,
Lane Hall, Commons Room, 12
Q Art Museum, Matisse Revisited,
ArtTalk, AVRoom, 12:10p.m.;
The Music Chamber Strings: In
an English Garden, concert,
Museum of Art, 8 p.m.
Q Bound by the Wind, movie,
sponsored by Women's Inter-
national League for Peace and
Freedom, Unitarian Church,
1917 Washtenaw, Emerson
Q Citizens Against Crime,
speaker, EECS Building, Room
Q Cuba: A Second Revolution?,
Q Physical Seminars, Electrostatic
Contribution to DNA Structure
and Stability and Vibronic
Analysis of Substituted Indoles,
Chemistry Building, Room
Q Pre-Med Club, Summer Oppor-
tunities in BioMedical Research,
Angell Hall, Auditorium D, 6:30
Q Professional Insights Program
Information Session, 3200 Stu-
dent Activities Building, Career
Planning & Placement Program
Q Roe v. Wade Anniversary Film,
Angell Hall, Auditorium C, 7
Q Russian Tea and Conversation
Practice, Slavic Department,
MLB, 3rd floor Conference
Room, 4-5 p.m.
Q Rotaract Mass Meeting, Michi-
gan Union, Anderson Rooms A
& B, 7 p.m.
Q Structure/Function Relations
in Rat Nucleus of the Solitary
Tract, Maxwell Conference
Room, HR4054, 3:45 p.m.
Q Safewalk Safety Walking Ser-
vice, UGLi, lobby, 936-1000,
Q_1 1.2(1 r
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