Simpson Greek life pays homage to ancient Greece for Greek Week


Photo by Jacob Kuehl. Tri Deltas prepare for their first Greek Week kick-off event.

by Evan Burley, Staff Reporter

*Evan Burley is an active member of Kappa Theta Psi fraternity.

From April 12 through April 15, Simpson College’s Greek houses took part in a week of activities, challenges and an award event at the end.

Simpson College’s fraternities and sororities gathered for the annual Greek Week, a week-long event during which the Greek houses participated in different activities and events organized for each day of the week. Given the circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic, two events were held in person while the other two were held via Zoom.

Junior Riley Dykstra, ritualist for Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity and president of the Interfraternal Council (IFC), said, “I was worried that it might not turn out well. We only had two-ish weeks to plan it with some conflicts we had. By the end, I think it was good, for a COVID-19 Greek Week. Could it have been better? Yes, but everything can always be better. And I think we did a good job, given our circumstances.”

Monday morning saw the beginning of the philanthropy event and TikTok challenge, with both starting at 9:00 a.m and ending on Thursday at 1:00 p.m. Later that evening was the Greek Week Kickoff, which took place in the field between Kappa Kappa Gamma and Kappa Theta Psi. During the kickoff, three Minute to Win It games were played, with each game lasting three rounds. At the end of the event, a group photo was taken with all of the houses. On Tuesday evening there was a volleyball game at the sand volleyball courts. 

Senior Cate McEntaffer, a member of Delta Delta Delta said, “I really liked being able to participate in person. It gave us some sense of what it was like pre-pandemic and made it more fun in my opinion. We haven’t been able to have many in-person events and these events really made it feel like Greek Week.”

On Wednesday evening there was diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) training. It was held as a Zoom webinar led by Carolyn Dallinger, department chair of sociology and criminal justice and professor of social work and assistant dean for multicultural and international affairs Walter Lain. During the training, Dallinger and Lain spoke about ways Greek life communities on campus can make their houses more inclusive spaces. 

“It’s such a strange position to be talking to a screen, but we hope that we can embrace each and every one of you listening to this. To understand that when we talk about the terms diversity, equity, inclusion, we’re talking about many different identities and many different positions that we may have as individuals,” Lain said. “We realize that we’re speaking here to the Greek community; we understand that there is such a special bond, where it’s equally important to be respectful of all identities, whether they’re visible or invisible.”

Dallinger and Lain presented topics such as adopting ground rules for during house meetings, education on civil rights laws, resources on campus if a student experiences a violation of those rights, addressing implicit biases and the five faces of oppression. The five faces of oppression, a model presented by political theorist and feminist Iris Marion Young, are exploitation, marginalization, powerlessness, cultural imperialism and violence.

Thursday evening was the TikTok viewing and award ceremony, which was held in Hubbell Hall with a limited amount of people in attendance, per Simpson College’s guidelines via Zoom. The winners of the Greek grade cup, chapter president of the year, Greek philanthropic award, Greek involvement award, Greek volleyball, service hours, banners and TikToks were announced first. Afterward was the TikTok viewing, during which each house’s video submission was viewed, and the winners were also announced.

“I think the TikTok challenge was a fun idea,” McEntaffer said, “but the execution could have been better. There weren’t many rules regarding what accounts they should be put on, so some chapters could have had an advantage over another if their account had a larger following at the beginning.” 

The overall first, second and third place winners of Greek Week were announced at the end of the event. Coming in first place was KKG with 325 points. In second place was Sigma Alpha Epsilon with 320 points. Finally, Tri Delta came in third with 265 points. With that, Greek Week 2021 officially came to a close.

“I hope that we can have a Greek Week that is normal. One where we don’t have to worry about COVID or being separated,” Dykstra said. “I hope we can all come together in Black Box and do lip sync. I hope for a Greek that everyone is looking forward to and will have as much fun as possible. Everyone was just happy to participate and do good throughout this week.”