Watch How The AFLV Central Conference Used Black Greek “Strolling” To Build Intercultural Bridges
This weekend greeks from all councils joined together at the AFLV (Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values) Central Conference to network, exchange and even STROLL!
This three-day national leadership conference which happens every February in Indianapolis, brought student leaders from across the nation together for a series of educational workshops, keynote speakers and leadership seminars designed to improve campus Greek councils. Representatives from Multicultural Greek Councils, Interfraternity Councils, National Pan-Hellenic Councils, and Panhellenic Associations were in attendance, proving to be an amazing place for cultural exchange.
And what is cultural exchange without a little bit of dancing? One of the highlights of the conference was the annual NBGLC Stroll competition. Unlike normal stroll offs where fraternities and sororities compete against each other using their own signature moves, this particular stroll competition took a Greek unity approach and mixed fraternities and sororities from all of the councils together so that councils outside of the NPHC can be introduced to a little bit of Black Greek culture and establish a new understanding for it. The competition promotes Greek unity while upholding NPHC’s high standards and expectations. There is no other event like #AFLVCentral that can bring councils together like this one.
Watch The Yard was able to get some ears and eyes on the ground and bring you some first hand participant testimonials about the importance of the stroll competition in terms of building bridges between groups who often have little to no real contact with each other on college campuses. The following testimonials are from participants in the stroll off who represent the best and brightest from the NALFO, NAPA, NIC, NPC, NPHC, and NMGC umbrella groups.
UNC – Charlotte Testimonials
Byron Harris – Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., Rho Gamma Chapter
“Coming from a campus where our councils are really close, I feel that this experience brought us together even more. We went to dinner after everything was all said and done. We are starting to plan doing events together and increasing collaboration across councils. It also brought us closer as a community, in getting to know what our organizations stand for and how we run individually as councils.”
Cady Rae – Alpha Delta Pi, Zeta Gamma Chapter
“At UNC – Charlotte we do the PHA/NPHC Stroll Competition. So we team up with one of them and they teach us. Then we compete. I’ve loved doing that. That’s the only time we get to stroll because PHA doesn’t stroll. When we were coming here, I was so excited to do it again because we don’t get to do it that often. And I met all new people. Not one fraternity or sorority. It’s a mixture of us. It was so much fun. We were up until 12 AM. We’ve had two-a-day practices.”
University of Iowa Testimonials
AJ Garcia – Sigma Nu Fraternity
“I gained a bigger appreciation for the NPHC, PHC, and MGC organizations. All their traditions and history they have adds to the diversity of all who participated.”
Ar’Tesia McCoy – Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
“So I also thought that it was an awesome experience. Like, we’re on a PWI so, being able to come together and actually bond and do something collectively speaks volumes. It was nice for us to actually be able to do this. Like a lot of schools look at it like it’s weird, but we’re all one greek community. To teach them our history of strolling and appreciation being reciprocated made it a big difference.”
Brylie Berndthart – Kappa Alpha Theta (PHC President)
“For me, I gained a whole new appreciation for strolling. I was a dancer and I used to dance. I was like oh, this looks easy. This just blew my mind. Even coming here and seeing other chapters and how much they stroll, it just makes me want to learn so much more and learn from the people that do it…cause it’s awesome.”
Tito Castenieda – Sigma Lamda International Fraternity, Inc.
“I think it brought us closer together with all four councils. I think it’s easy to stereotype a different council than you. I mean that’s what I thought of a different council without really knowing who they were. Assuming things were a totally shut-down for me. Now I know not to assume things about PHC and IFC specifically. As student leaders, we have the opportunity to take this back to our campus and implement this to all council members rather than just council officers. I believe it would build a greater sense of community at the University of Iowa.”
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