The Cultural Greek Council house is located at 85 Upper Sayre Park Road. The CGC is currently in jeopardy of losing its on-campus house located at due to low enrollment numbers. (Roushui Chen/B&W Staff)

Low CGC enrollment jeopardizes houses status


The Cultural Greek Council at Lehigh is currently in jeopardy of losing its on-campus house located at 85 Upper Sayre Park Road due to low enrollment numbers. 

According to Student Affairs, the council was created in 2009 due to racial segregation. The council works to empower individuals of color, promote activism, provide a platform for students of color to voice their thoughts and emphasize cultural awareness on campus. 

Lorenzo Wilson, ‘25, the campus relations chair for the executive board of the CGC, said their recruitment process lasts all year, differing from the typical Interfraternity and Panhellenic councils. 

“Cultural organizations on Lehigh’s campus tend to have less of a demographic to pick from, primarily because we are at a predominantly white institution,” Wilson said. 

The CGC does not accept everyone. Currently, the house has 15 members, ranging from two to six in each class. 

Carson Rodriguez, ‘25, the programming chair of the CGC, said the council is accredited with excellence. 

“Everyone always tries to have a large pledge class that has as much quality as can be, but sometimes there are just off semesters,” Rodriguez said. “There are a lot of factors that go into it. Every organization looks for different qualities that go into people. It is a real case-by-case basis. There are just some years where the people you are looking for aren’t there.”

Rodriguez lived in the house last year and said it was a great experience. 

He said in terms of convenience, the house was a helpful asset to increase interest in recruitment.

Luis Caceres, ‘24, the president of the CGC, said the house had great benefits for hosting events, but the residential piece was much more difficult.

“It is difficult to put so many different organizations in one space,” Caceres said.

According to Student Affairs, the council oversees six active chapters, including Kappa Alpha Psi, Lambda Theta Alpha, Lambda Tau Omega, Mu Sigma Upsilon, Phi Sigma Chi and Sigma Gamma Rho. 

“Having a house on campus legitimizes it in terms of the Greek scene,” Wilson said. “You need a physical space to be represented. We see all these other organizations having houses on campus and we feel having the CGC house will give us the chance to vocalize ourselves.”

Wilson said having an area belonging to the CGC to express their culture and identity is needed. However, the costs for students living in the house are a significant factor in the decline in residents. 

“Economically, living off campus is cheaper, so it would make sense for students to move to the off-campus section in comparison to staying on campus in the facility house,” Wilson said.

The CGC is working with administration to find a compromise for housing.

Wilson said the housing administration is trying to meet them in the middle. He said it’s important the administration keeps in mind that the CGC works differently than other Greek organizations on campus.

Wilson said the current situation has not stopped the council’s work ethic.

“I feel like we try to establish ourselves in various other areas on campus, whether that be separate cultural organizations or even university professional organizations,” Wilson said. “I feel like we try to make our presence known in other ways.” 

Caceres said if they lose the house, it’s important to still have a physical representation of the CGC on campus, whether that be a plaque or space on campus. 

“We might not have the residential piece but we are still looking for spaces that can satisfy our needs, like places where we can study,” Caceres said. “Just have some sort of permanent space on campus where everyone at the CGC house has access.”

Despite the potential of losing the house, the CGC is dedicated to remaining active at Lehigh.

“It won’t change how hard we work and how many events we have, we’re still going to be a big force in the Greek community,” Caceres said.

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