Monday, April 23, 2012

Frat-ernizing with the Law

My first couple of semesters in college weren’t the most exciting. I went to a large Catholic university where I wasn’t feeling like I completely fit in at the time. During one of my classes, a student came in to talk about some of the extracurricular activities on campus. He mentioned a co-ed fraternity that sparked my interest. I decided after much investigation it was worth a shot. I went to a meet and greet with some of the people in the organization and I was sold.

A week or so later they sent me an invitation to pledge the fraternity to possibly become a member. I thought about the process and I had nothing to lose. Plus, it seemed like a great bunch of people that I could bond with and enjoy my college experience a little more to the fullest. So, myself along with eleven others embarked on this new adventure. Due to the intense amount of work and effort, a few people dropped out after two weeks. It was a lot to take on especially with school work responsibilities.

We received an assignment to go to one of our pledge masters hometown and take pictures at various landmarks. The seven of us decided that after our night classes we would drive over and get the job done. It was about 10:30pm when we left campus and the directions approximated that it would be about a half hour drive. We got really lost along the way, but finally made it there around 12:00am. The town was interesting to say the least. Very quiet and suburban, with no sign of any life at that time on a Wednesday night.

We were driving around aimlessly looking for the places to take our pictures. A  cop car pulls up behind us and we all immediately got nervous. He walked up to the car and asked what we were up to. I said we were looking to take a few pictures for a project and he asked why so late at night. We all looked at each other in fear not knowing what to say exactly. My friend Shelly burst out, “We have a pledge assignment for our fraternity, and we got lost, and we’re supposed to drive around this town looking for pointless objects, and…” The officer interjected, “Can you tell me what you all are looking for?” We handed over our list which had about ten things on it.

Without cracking a smile, he sternly said, “Listen, I’m going to drive to these locations, and you are going to follow me and quickly take your pictures. Then, you are going to get back on the expressway and head home, understood?” We simultaneously shook our heads yes. It actually felt pretty cool to be led around town by the cops to get what we needed. As we got our last picture, the office drove by the entrance to the expressway and over his loudspeaker yelled out, “You’re welcome, now go home!”

We did complete all of our assignments over the 8 week period and became brothers of the fraternity. I’m glad that I had the opportunity to change my college experience around and make the best of it. It was one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my life and helped shape the person I am today teaching me a great deal about friendship, trust, and unity.

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