Re: Conquer Your Campus - Mark Redman
I read this book between my freshman and sophomore years of college, and I can say that most of it I supported and liked. For the most part, I can definitely agree on everything you have stated. However, there are the points where I will break away and disagree.
Before I get into it, I will agree with your first stated con. College is not all about drinking, and at a school where they really crack down on that activity, you have to be careful about that sort of stuff. If you can game without the alcohol, you're pretty much set to go for most of the college scene. I also agree that no college is the same and that they all have their different political and social standards.
However, I greatly disagree with your second view on sororities and fraternities. As you had stated, no college or university is the same. Likewise, no two chapters of a fraternity or sorority are the same. I have visited multiple chapters of my Greek group, and none of them are the same in terms of what they do or who the members are. I can tell you that after going through mine's pledging process and being around my fraternity, they DO NOT promote hazing, and they severely crack down on offenses like rape. They will blackball you and bring about penalties by the college and police, and they have done it recently.
As you have pointed out, there are also the bad apples of the bunch. I know that the chapter of my fraternity in UW-Madison has their pledges sleep on the floors of the house for a whole week in nothing but sleeping bags while their studies took a heavy hit. There used to be a group on my campus that dealt drugs and were dangerous partiers, and I don't mean dangerous by they were awesome party animals.
There are good groups, and there are bad groups. Just because you hear from one of your friends on one campus that a sorority or fraternity is bad does not mean that it will be the same at your college. Given that said, I would highly recommend researching your groups on campus before you think about joining one. Overall though, I believe that they can prove valuable during and after college.
"There is no better than adversity. Every defeat, every heartbreak, every loss, contains its own seed, its own lesson on how to improve your performance the next time." - Malcolm X