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American Today

On Campus

This Beta is the Alpha Male of Greek Life

By Mike Unger

Curtis Burrill

Curtis Burrill (Photo: Jeff Watts)

Greek life is a way of life for Curtis Burrill.

AU’s new coordinator of Greek Life, Burrill is a passionate believer in the positive impact fraternities and sororities can have on young men and women. He experienced it firsthand when he joined Beta Theta Pi as an undergraduate at the University of Maine, and he’s hoping to impart it to students at his new professional home.

“It takes a unique person to become part of a Greek organization,” he said. “You’re looking to better yourself, better your community, and get to know people on a higher level.”

Burrill oversees AU’s 10 fraternities and seven sororities, as well other Greek-affiliated organizations. He’s involved in everything from programming to recruitment to discipline. About 15 percent of AU undergrads are involved in Greek life, Burrill said, making it the biggest group of organizations on campus.

To better serve that large population, Greek life this year has moved from under the auspices of the Dean of Students to Student Activities.

“I think it’s a great move for our students,” Burrill said. “It’s a better fit for Greek life in terms of providing a lot more resources.”

A landscape horticulture major at Maine, Burrill sought out a fraternity to “make the university a little bit smaller for me.”

“I wouldn’t have been friends with more than half of those guys if it wasn’t for Beta,” he said of his fraternity brothers. “I assimilated to their values. The things fraternities value are the things we value as collegians. Learning about scholarship, leadership. The basic values of being a well-rounded student is what it comes down to. Being a good civic leader, being an asset in the community.”