For years it’s been traditional that fraternities and sororities have a home to call their own where members can relax and be with one another, but in Big Rapids students are limited in their options of houses to rent.
The houses in town are insufficient to hold organizations who may have over 10 members. The solution Lambda Chi Alpha has discovered is to leave their house and move into Hillcrest Oakwood Properties.
Following their fall 2018 rush, Ferris human resource management sophomore James Kendrick, who is the housing manager knew that they were going to outgrow their house.
With 32 current members and a house that fits eight it can be difficult to hold events without feeling cramped. With that in mind LCA got to work looking for potential housing options.
“We originally began looking through our alumni trying to get a house but that’s a long process so we kind of went out on our own to look for options,” Kendrick said.”
Ferris computer information technology junior Joshua Betz, who is also the president of LCA said that Oakwood came to them with the idea to move into the apartments.
“One of our members, Matthew Miller actually works at Oakwood. So, they approached him with the idea,” Betz said “The idea of putting our letters up was brought up, we walked through, decided on some renovations and we signed the contract to make it official.”
Oakwood is actually pushing to have more of the Greek community to live in the apartments. “Be part from the start, Greek row 2020” read flyers that are being distributed around town. With this, different Greek organizations would be able to hang their letters and potentially alter the buildings, which is something that LCA is working on.
“So, it’s six apartments that are together and in the middle two, the wall in the living room is going to be knocked out,” Kendrick said. “We also really want to connect some of the decks but we have to work on that with them.”
Ferris professional golf management freshmen Aaron Hoop currently lives in North hall with three other members of LCA. And is excited to live with the rest of his brothers.
“It’ll definitely be different,” Hoop said. “There’s seven people in the house now, and then all of a sudden you go to 24 people so things will probably get a little rowdy. But it’ll be interesting to see it all play out ”
LCA has of course however taken this into consideration and have thought about its members who might want a more quiet setting.
“Everyone will pretty much group up based on personality and major. The middle one, that is going to have the walls torn down, is obviously where it’s going to be louder because that’s the spot for everyone to hang out.” Kendrick said. “So the people who can sleep with noise and know it’s not going to bother them as all are going to live there. The end caps are completely blocked off, which is the apartment that is just attached pretty much. So that’s for those who are in nursing school or going into pharmacy school or in majors who maybe need a little more privacy to study are going to be.”
But despite the concerns the members are confident that having everyone in one place will make the group stronger.
“I think it’s definitely got more benefits but there’s also more risks involved because we’ll obviously have more members there and it’s more of a public setting but I think overall it’s going to have more benefits because the brotherhood will be there and it’ll create a tighter bond.” Betz said.