New Greek construction plans draw mixed reactions

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    The new Greek housing plans got mixed reactions from current Greek students.

    Several TCU Greek students have expressed their excitement for the new Greek houses, while other students have said they don’t like that the houses will look similar to one another.

    Students in support of the plans believe they will be an upgrade to the current Greek housing on campus.

    Greek row makes up a significant portion of TCU’s on-campus living, but the current houses are of much lower quality than other campus living options, said Greek resident Andrew Bogard.

    “Some houses have trouble filling all of their rooms because many Greek members don’t want to live in the houses,” Bogard said. “With improved living areas, I am confident Greek row will become more popular.”

    The dorm style of the houses and the proximity to each of the houses is something to look forward to, said Greek member Laura Simard.

    “My overall opinion of the new Greek housing proposal is positive,” Simard said. “Though I am sad I will never get to experience big house dinners and hangouts like my friends at state schools do in their large mansions.”

    The benefits of having the houses look similar to one other may attract students, Simard said.

    “Just the other day I was giving a tour to a prospective daughter and dad, and he mentioned that he liked that the houses are dorm style because it prevents the organizations from forming cliques or partying on-campus,” Simard said.

    Kristen Clarke, another Greek resident, said the plans make sense due to the potential lack of space on campus for large houses.

    “What many people don’t realize is that TCU really doesn’t have enough land or acreage to be able to break away from the uniformity in our Greek housing,” Clarke said. “We simply don’t have the space to build [large] sorority and fraternity mansions.”

    Despite the positive feedback from several students, others said they do not fully support of the new plans.

    Greek resident Cass Peterson said the plans may not be right for TCU.

    “Some bigger changes are needed so that they can keep pace with rapid growth of TCU’s Greek system,” Peterson said.

    The housing plans should not be focused on uniformity but on making sure every chapter has a unique image on campus, said Greek member Chris Curran.

    “Every chapter is unique in its own regard and reflects that through academics, service and brotherhood and sisterhood,” Curran said. “With TCU giving every chapter the same treatment on the house itself, aside from the chapter rooms, you essentially buy into the idea of uniformity rather than allowing for a freedom of expression.”

    Curran said that there may be difficulty in establishing a “true legacy” on campus if all of the houses look the same.

    The Greek houses will not be the columned fraternity and sorority houses that people think of at state schools, but they will have more of a group “living-feeling” to them, said Mike Russel, assistant vice chancellor for student affairs.

    “Everybody wants a big building with columns,” Russel said.

    The current plans will prevent chapters from believing that they are treated differently than others, Russel said.