Friday, December 12, 2014

Research Blog #10: Final Abstract, Bibliography, and Link to your Paper


            American college experience is characterized by Greek life, specifically fraternities. There is a debate between those who perceive them as illegal and unruly, and those believe they are great organizations for the production of the next generation of skillful leaders. A variety of studies have been conducted to prove that core values and respectable characteristics are actively promoted and utilized within fraternities. My research proves that in spite of the bad image they receive, fraternities are great conduits for a successful career. In order to change their image, it is necessary for fraternities to change how they operate, internally and externally, and to establish a working and mutually beneficial relationship with their university.

  • ·      Byer, John L. "Fraternity Members' Perceptions Of How Involvement In A Fraternity And Involvement In Student Government Has Influenced Their College Experiences." (1998): ERIC. Web. 7 Nov. 2014.

·      "Core Values." National Park Service. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2014.
·      Flanagan, Caitlin. "The Dark Power of Fraternities." The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, Mar. 2014. Web. 02 Nov. 2014.
  • ·      "Fraternity Membership And Labor Market Outcomes." Monthly Labor Review 135.12 (2012): 39-40. Business Source Premier. Web. 12 Dec. 2014.
  • ·      "Fraternities and Sororities." Wikipedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2014.
  • ·      Gray, Eliza. "Fraternity Row." Time 184.23 (2014): 42. Middle Search Plus. Web. 12 Dec. 2014.
  • ·      Isacco, Anthony, Ashlee Warnecke, Miguel Ampuero, Lindsay Donofrio, and Jonathan A. Davies. "Evaluation of a Leadership Program for Fraternity Men." The Journal of Men's Studies 21.3 (2013): 217-35. Web.
  • ·      Jacobs, Peter. "I Joined A Fraternity And It Was One Of The Best Decisions I Ever Made." Business Insider. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2014.

·      Long, Larry D.1, "Unchallenged, Professed Core Values." College Student Affairs Journal 30.2 (2012): 15-30. OmniFile Full Text Mega (H.W. Wilson). Web. 2 Nov. 2014.
  • ·      "Privatization 101." In the Public Interest. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2014.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Literature Review #5

2. Isacco, Anthony, Ashlee Warnecke, Miguel Ampuero, Lindsay Donofrio, and Jonathan A. Davies. "Evaluation of a Leadership Program for Fraternity Men." The Journal of Men's Studies 21.3 (2013): 217-35. Web. 30 Nov. 2014.

3. The article describes a study conducted at a Pacific Northwest university. The study involved 20 students involved in fraternities from different backgrounds and interests. The study was aimed at teaching fraternity men leadership skills and further, to see if these are beneficial to them. The authors established a course for these students to enroll in, where they were taught a variety of subjects concerning male masculinity, health, and leadership and organizational skills. For the most part the study was a success. The men reported that they were open to a more holistic model of leadership, which incorporated self-reflection, awareness of gender norms, consultation, and men's health. The only limitations involved were the complaints from the students involved, as well as the lack of an alumni from a Greek organization being involved as well.

4. The authors are Anthony Isacco, Ashlee Warnecke, Miguel Ampuero, Lindsay Donofrio, and Jonathan A. Davies. I don't know much about the authors, but all are from the Catham University's Counseling Psychology Programs, besides Davies, who is from the University of Oregon's Counseling and Testing Center. Their job descriptions alone lead me to believe they know what they are talking about, as well as the detail in which they went about holding the study.

5. Gender Role Socialization Theory is "grounded in the belief that the expressions of masculinities are social constructions." Positive Masculinity "emphasizes the strengths of traditional masculinity such as male relational styles built on shared activities and humanitarian efforts of fraternal organizations."

6. a. "...and the six programmatic objectives were met such as increased self-awareness of leadership strengths and weaknesses, how gender norms influence leadership development, and how to connect men's health with leadership" (pg. 217)    b. "The main focus was to help fraternity men develop leadership skills, which has been shown to increase positive behaviors of fraternity men and contribute to a positive collegiate experience" (pg.219)    c. "An overarching theme expressed by participants was that the program 'was an opportunity to learn various approaches' to leadership, which will help 'me to become a more effective leader'." (pg.225)

7. This article helped me out quite a lot. It introduced a more tangible and concrete theory for me to use as the basis for my argument or beginning of the paper. In addition, it consolidated the other research I have seen by going deeper and looking for the real factors behind leadership, showing that its possible to be developed where the system is in place to work with these fraternities in pursuing this common goal. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Research Blog #9: Argument & Counter-Argument

The basis of my argument for my research proposal is that colleges and universities should be doing more to integrate fraternity chapters in order to promote the proper development of leadership skills for their student's careers in the future. I say they should be doing this because due to privatization, colleges need convey to their prospective students that they (the campus) is the place for them. In order to do that, especially nowadays, is to have and promote a Greek life thats prosperous because it is one of the most lucrative aspects of colleges today. By doing so, they can promote good leadership skills in the fraternities that will prevent horrible scenarios from occurring more often and help develop skills for their future careers. I disagree with one of the sources I use, the Dark Power of Fraternities, because it paints fraternities in a horrible light and stereotypes all chapters are 'Animal Houses'. This is an example of the debate going on for the most part. There is one side that insists that fraternities are horrible places that promote misogyny and abuse, whereas the other believes fraternities are beneficial leadership-building brotherhoods. I counter that they are beneficial places, but that the headline-grabbing fraternities are good as well but lack the infrastructure and support to develop those skills properly. Schools should put in more effort to welcome and support, rather than deny and expel, these chapters.

Research Blog #8: Interview

For my interview for our research my project I decided to interview my fraternity chapter's advisor, Oliver Minguillon. A former brother, Oliver now has a family of his own and a successful career. In deciding to interview him, I was trying to ascertain how Greek life has changed since his time here and how his experience has helped him in his career & in life. I learned a great deal, specifically that schools have so far made great strides in their communication and cooperation with fraternities on campus regarding academic performance and university-wide engagement. In addition, he also said his pursuit of leadership positions during his time here helped him do the same upon graduation. Finally, his credentials that he gained during his time have helped him socially and within the business world, and have continued to evolve as a result. I decided to interview him because he was a former, and even more recent, brother from our specific chapter, and on top of that, he is our chapter advisor. He has a successful career, so that and the other factors made him a perfect example of someone who has benefited from his time in a fraternity. His e-mail is

  • "The experience is truly one where 'you get what you put into it'. I decided to spend my time pursuing letter positions and other committee roles because I knew it would help me with different characteristics I could use later on in my career."
  • "I believe in leadership in terms of a trickle-down effect; a lot of Greek chapters fail, I believe, because they don't have the proper leadership in place and that sets a bad example for the rest of the brotherhood." 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Research Blog #7: Your Case

My main "case" is going to be talking about the relationship between fraternities and colleges currently, as described in "The Dark Power of Fraternities." The case in point is going to be the issue of Beta Theta Pi and its interaction with its school, Wesleyan College. To summarize, the fraternity was known for being an "Animal House" yet the school never did much about it. When a girl was finally sexually assaulted and sought an answer from the school authorities, the way in which the school responded was distasteful and set off a public relations nightmare. In the end, however, the students came to the defense of the chapter, as well as some parents, and the Beta Theta Pi chapter was allowed to stay. This speaks to my debate because it shows the delicate relationship between schools and fraternities today, where schools need to protect their students and promote good values, while at the same time, semi-endorsing the illegal and ignorant activities of some fraternities in order to attract and promote good student enrollment for the next year. This is the only research I have for this specific case, but I expect when I do more research I will find more and more examples. The website that has the article is this:

Research Blog #6: Visual

This visual is an infographic based on a variety of information describing Greek life across the nation and the outstanding patterns within their membership. It extolls the benefits of being a Greek, the general activities of being a Greek, and the trend of Greek life members to be active participants in higher levels of government and business. This is significant because it adds a lot of facts and figures to my argument and allows me to investigate these even further.

Literature Review #4

2. Jacobs, Peter. "I Joined A Fraternity And It Was One Of The Best Decisions I Ever Made." Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 8 Jan. 2014. Web. 12 Nov. 2014.

3. The article was in actuality a rebuttal to another article published by Bloomberg that proposed that all fraternities should be shut down. In response, the author decided to defend his experience as a fraternity member and extolling the benefits of being one. He begins by discussing how fraternity members are actually less hostile to women. He details the various studies that have shown that fraternity members have lower levels of threatening attitudes toward women, something he attributes to the sexual consent, assault, and abuse education sometimes required by fraternities. He goes on to make his next point that Greeks on average have higher GPA's than their counterparts. He cites a variety of different studies to back this up. He makes the good point, one i have never though of, that of college students, Greeks have a higher degree of staying enrolled until graduation than non-Greeks. His next point is that Greek life is becoming more inclusive, rather than exclusive. He notes how chapters are becoming more racially and ethnically diverse, and indeed, even homosexuals are being readily accepted in some chapters. Finally, he makes the great point of saying that fraternities help provide a social network that enables newer students to cope with the stresses of college life and loneliness/depression much easier. 

4. The author was Peter Jacobs, a prolific author for Business Insider who writes a lot of articles based on college-level education and its relationship with its students. 

5. He defined Hypermasculinity as an exaggerated adherence to traditional male gender role beliefs. He also introduced a term called 'Gaybro' which is the non-deragatory term used for gay fraternity brothers. 

6. a. "Hypermasculinity — defined as 'an exaggerated adherence to traditional male gender role beliefs' — was generally a predictor of sexual aggression for all men except those in fraternities," Inside Higher Ed reports. 
    b. "Greeks were more likely to have High than Low GPA's and Independents were more likely to have Low than High GPA's."
The study showed that "90% of fraternity/sorority members compared to 70% of non-affiliated students were enrolled during their senior year."

7. This material helps me explore my research topic further because it provides more evidence that when utilized correctly, fraternities can benefit their members in a variety of ways. In addition, the author was a fraternity member who is now a successful author on the Internet, so that in and of itself tells how the fraternity experience can truly benefit those who realize the opportunity in front of them.