Students question club equality
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
By Aaron Askew
There is a growing frustration among students on campus who feel equal
opportunity is fading away. This frustration seems to be most potent in certain
social service clubs and almost non-existent in others.
This has led to the conclusion that certain clubs on campus are possibly being
given more privileges than others. There are fingers being pointed in many
different directions, but many students claim that two particular clubs have
nothing to complain about.
The director and assistant director of Earn Your Wings 2007 were from one
particular male and female club. The position of freshmen links, has 9 out of
10 males from one club and the majority of the 10 females from one club.
When viewing a list of SGA officers, it is easy to see that 17 of the 20
offices, this is excluding outreach, dorm reps and freshmen, are from one male
club and one female club. Five out of six people who were up for homecoming
king and queen this past fall were also from these two clubs.
Many students are asking why people from certain clubs seem to be taking over
the school. Brett Worsham, vice-president of Kappa Sigma Tau, feels some clubs
are being unfairly favored.
"I think that there seems to be a propensity of people in Chi that get to
be in SGA or student related activities. It almost seems like the
administration lets them have things like that and doesn't consider anyone
else. I think Freshman Links is an example. I don't know that I ever have
personally not been chosen for things because of my club but I know of friends
who feel that way," Worsham said.
Tiffany Stafford, president of Iota Kappa Phi, is also frustrated that people seem
to be looked more highly upon if they are in a certain club.
"I think that people sometimes put people on a pedestal based on what club
they are in and not what kind of person they are. There have been times when I
felt that more qualified people have been overlooked because their status on
campus isn't as high as others," Stafford said.
Kelly Dunagan, chaplain of Delta Gamma Sigma, said he thinks it is possible
that club has an influence on people earning positions on campus.
"I think some things do depend on popularity. If you're in a social
service club then people from your club will vote for you and people who don't
like your club probably won't vote for you," Dunagan said.
Jenny Gray, president of Gamma Rho, said she doesn't think that being in a
certain club can guarantee you anything but does hope that positions on campus
can start being represented by various clubs.
"I think the school should be more conscious of giving people in other
clubs opportunities," Gray said.
Although Worsham expresses his frustration that the right people may not be
getting an equal opportunity, he is also aggravated by those who want a change
but don't do anything to achieve it.
"It's almost like OC is playing a popularity game and I don't think that
it is very representative of the school when only two clubs get positions. I
think that it shouldn't be the same type of people but needs to be diverse,"
Worsham said. "It does annoy me though that a lot of people don't try for
positions because they don't think they can get it but then complain about who
does get it."
Ryan Smith, a member of Chi Lambda Phi, serves as executive vice-president of
SGA and was also a director at this past year's Earn Your Wings.
He refutes any speculation that he was chosen based on his affiliation with his
"I don't think I was chosen for any position I've held just because of
what club I'm in. I've also never had the mind set that I am going to run for a
position because I'm in this particular club." Smith said.
He does think it is possible that some people might base some decisions on
"I'm sure that happens sometimes and that people are given positions based
on prejudice and sometimes people are given positions possibly based on what
club they're in. I hate prejudice and I understand that it goes on and I'm
sorry that it does," Smith said.
Many people have labeled last year's Earn Your Wings as rigged and have also
claimed that few of the people chosen for assistant director deserved their job
and feel that others would have done better. As director, Smith was one of the
people who helped pick these positions. In response to any accusations that the
Assistant Directors or other positions at Earn Your Wings were based off of
club or friendship, Smith says that's not the case.
"People we were close to ended up getting the positions but it was based
on our knowledge of the job that we knew they would do and not by club or just
because they were our friends," Smith said.
Many students feel there are other students who are just as qualified to be in
roles such as Freshmen Link or SGA, but were not given that position due to
their club. Others feel that they way people are treated is affected by the
club of their choice.
Gray thinks it's unfortunate that some people join a club because they think
they can gain popularity.
"Sometimes people are told that only certain clubs are good and that's not
true. You should be in a club because it fits you and not because you think you
won't be anyone unless you're in a certain club," Gray said. "It
should be about what people you like to be around. People think that some clubs
are the only ones to be in and that's just not true. All clubs need good
leaders and sometimes people could have a bigger role in another club."
Dunagan said he isn't bothered by people viewing him as a certain type of
person based on what club he's in.
"I'd say people may base things off of club but that doesn't bring me down
by any means. There are stereotypes and some are true and some are false. If
someone wants to take the time to get to know me for who I am then they can and
if they don't want to then that's fine too," Dunagan said.
Upperclassmen are also getting a sense that freshmen may be being shown an ugly
side of club, which is supposed to be an activity a student does and not who
Amanda Edwards, Vice-President of Theta Theta Theta, said that freshmen may be
receiving the wrong message about clubs.
"I think that once you're not a freshmen and are actually in a club it
gets better. You realize that the reputations of clubs don't always fit the
people. Freshmen get the wrong idea based off of what they are told by other
people," Edwards said.
Smith agrees but does see some improvement.
"I think it's getting better because the rule of freshmen not getting to
rush. There isn't a rivalry so you can make friendships with anyone and I still
have those friendships from freshman year whether they are in my club or not,"
However some people claim that is becoming less possible with rivalries between
the clubs growing more and more.
Students are also left wondering whether their experience at Oklahoma Christian
can be made less fulfilling because they happen to be in one club and not