On Saturday, Sept.14, the Greek Senate hosted their annual Greek Senate Conference. Members from every fraternity and sorority attended, as well as guest speakers from the Kean Community. Typically this would be an in-person event, however this year it transpired from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. via Zoom.
The Greek Senate is composed of members from different Greek letter organizations on campus. They come together for many purposes, from uniting the Greek community on campus to continuing to uphold the legacies of their organizations as well as the Greek Senate at large. They organize programming for the Greeks on campus and provide resources to help the members succeed in their personal endeavors. The Greek Senate hosts this conference every year to further instill the ideals of the Greek Senate into its members, which include scholarship, service, leadership, campus involvement, and brotherhood and sisterhood.
The event began with welcoming addresses from Scott Snowden, assistant director of Student Affairs, Alex Louis, assistant director of the Center for Leadership and Service and Roshorn Shivers Jr., the current Greek Senate president. They offered a warm welcome to the attendees and gave a glimpse of what was to come during the event. They emphasized the impact that members of the Greek community have on campus, as they are known to be outstanding students from academics to involvement.
The first breakout presentation was given by Robin Mansfield, the Director of Student Health Services. She spoke to the attendees about COVID-19 updates and the new protocol that people must follow when they visit campus. She also explained information about the virus to keep everyone safe, up-to-date and informed.
The second presentation was a collaboration between the Office of Student Conduct and the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Task Force (AToD). The presenters were Nicole Rodriguez, director of the Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct, and Kim Quinn from the Office of Counseling, Disability, Alcohol and Other Drugs Services. They expanded on community standards and core values, which include integrity, fairness, community, respect and responsibility, and explained how the attendees can uphold these values.
Following a virtual lunch break, the Greeks joined a session titled Social Media Etiquette, which was hosted by Leadership Coordinator and Kean Alumni Stephanie Martinez. She gave advice and tips for the Greeks to use on their organization’s social media platforms.
Martinez focused on the importance of understanding one’s audience, as well as branding and identity. Students participated in an activity where they were partnered up in breakout rooms with members from different organizations. There, they gave compliments and constructive feedback on everyone’s organizations' social media platforms, which was a very interactive activity.
The final presentation of the day, titled Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and was given by Joy L. Smith, Ed. D, an alumnus of the Rutgers Graduate School of Education. There, she educated the attendees on the history and current issues of stereotypes, biases and derogatory terms, and how they can relate to the Greek community. She also focused on language and the importance that words can hold. Students were able to participate in an open discussion to offer their views and ask any questions they had.
Smith said, “This [presentation is] about a reflective space, and you can kind of figure out what your next steps will be in making sure that [we are] culturally competent, that we’re aware of what's happening around us and that we're doing our part as leaders to make sure that we’re not letting certain things perpetuate.”
Overall, the Greek Senate Conference was a great means to bring together the Greek community and discuss a multitude of important topics that pertain to campus leaders.