GSU addresses multicultural issue on Greek Row

Olympic Village is home to Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Association groups. There are no multicultural chapters with houses in the area, a phenomenon that is common nationwide.Photo by: Drew Heimlich

Ayana Moore

Olympic Boulevard, also known as Greek Row, has been a staple in Georgia Southern University’s Greek community since it’s founding in the 1970s.

Of all the Greek chapters located on Greek Row, there are no multicultural chapters with houses.

“For the most part, nationally, minority groups don’t have houses. That is something that is usually more common with Interfraternity Council (IFC) and Panhellenic Association (PHA) groups,” Francisco Lugo, director of Fraternity and Sorority Relations at GSU, said. “Nationwide, it’s not really uncommon for these groups not to have houses.”

GSU does not actually have any ties to or control over what happens on Greek Row. Olympic Boulevard was founded by and for a private Greek housing corporation, Lugo said.

“The interesting thing about Greek Row is that the university does not own that land. It’s a corporation who handles it called Southern Greek Housing,” Lugo said. “From our understanding, the land and each individual fraternity [and sorority] owns the houses. So we at the university have no claim or no real authority when it comes to what happens there.”

In many Black Greek and multicultural chapters, members will live together in apartments and that will become the central location for the organization, James Wagner, president of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc., said.

“As far as Greek Row, we’ve never had something of that level here,” Wagner said. “I like the idea of having a central plot not just for Black Greeks but Multicultural Greeks.”

“Another thing is the turnover for the organization,” Jessica Turuc, coordinator of Fraternity and Sorority Relations, said. “With the MPHC and MCG, they’re not able to join until they’re an established student in college so that could typically be sophomore age.”

Although the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Relations serve as advisors of the chapters at GSU, it does not specifically deal with Greek Row.

“With the amount of things we do on campus, I feel like we should have something to honor our legacy,” Wagner said. “We do equal amounts of service, philanthropy and campus involvement.”