Fraternal communities adapt to Covid environment

Fall 2020 is new territory for Grambling State University community with the global pandemic changing how things are done on a daily basis both inside and outside of the classroom.

One thing that is not discussed as much on campus is how organizations that call Grambling home are taking measures to remain connected and socially cognizant of the pandemic while still beimng able to spread the ideals of their organization as well as recruit incoming underclassmen.

Tariq Craft, a member of the Delta Sigma chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity Incorporated, said the pandemic has affected communication between fraternity brothers.

Craft said over the summer, communication about what the next steps for the organization was sparse due to distance. Some members have also chosen to forego returning to campus, instead opting to take online classes from home.

Craft said the fraternity has been limiting its presence on campus and in the community.

“I believe it’s more important to be socially conscious during all the uncertainty,” Craft said. “Because we can’t discount the fact that many could have COVID-19, but be asymptomatic, which wouldn’t only expose our members, but we could potentially expose others.”

This helps explain why the face to face meetings of the Delta Sigma chapter only recently resumed last week.

The approach of this particular “Devine 9” fraternity is nearly poles apart from the non-Greek organization United African American Men, or UAAM.

UAAM has had meetings and even the release of a new line of brothers since the return to campus.

With this exposure, and with the GSU administration’s concerns about the gatherings outside of campus, Myles Duett, a member of UAAMett said precautions should be taken when it comes to planning and hosting gatherings.

“You have to pick and choose your battles when it comes to going out because the students who chose to come back, many of them came because they needed the social interaction, so as long as there’s social distancing and you wear a mask near small crowds I can’t say not to go enjoy yourself,” Duett said.

Tariq Craft