Greek Week breaks down the brick wall

By Samantha Kummerer, The Prowl

Greek Week traditionally takes place in the spring. The three week-long event allows PHA and IFC to come together to serve campus and community. Greek Week pairs Greek chapters together to create a positive setting through community service, intermural and a variety of events.

In the past the university’s Greek Week took place without the operation of NPHC. The NPHC includes the nine historically African American fraternities and sorieties. Last year’s Greek Week theme was “One Mission, One Community, One Greek Week,” yet the inclusion of NPHC was not part of this “One Mizzou” take on the event.

This year plans are in place for NPHC to join Greek pairings. This incorporation has been tried in the past but has never stuck.

Kappa Alpha Si president Chris Chandler believes that this year is different due to the force and belief behind it.

“The planning started at a president meeting last spring where there was a consensus that the talk needs to stop and the action to start,” Alpha Phi Alpha president Devin Chavers said.

In the past the NPHC community has been ridiculed for “Black Homecoming,” an African American tradition, that now raises questions on the notion of “One Mizzou.”

“We are not trying to separate ourselves. We have a tradition and, just like how everyone else on campus is allowed to embrace their tradition, we should be able to embrace ours as well. In order to incorporate well you have to understand somebodies traditions.” Chavers said.

An important aspect of NPHC’s tradition has been stepping, an aspect that they hope they can bring to the upcoming Greek Week and teach the rest of the community.

The specific ways in which NPHC will be involved has not been decided yet. While much of the Greek community is excited for the incorporation they anticipate resistance.

“Whenever you have new things happen there’s always a little pull back because its different and people aren’t sure how its going to work, but I think there is an optimism behind that so I feel like its not a strong resistance,” Chandler said.

While some people may resist and not participate the hope is for improvement after the initial integration.

“The first person to break through the brick wall will always go through the most pain,” Chavers said.

If the fusion does prove effective NPHC hopes to continue the joining of Greek Chapters into other events throughout the year. The

“This is one of the events that can bring chapters together and build relationships. It won’t be just NPHC chapter and PHA chapter doing things together it will be friends doing things and could be actual relations and friends being made.” Chandler said.