Oxford’s Guilty Pleasure: A Friday Night at Frat Row

During my first week at Oxford, many sophomores told me that I had to make at least one trip to Frat Row. When I asked why, they told me it was just something I had to experience. They were right; Frat Row is quite the experience.

Oxford College, because of its small size, is notorious for not having any on-campus events over certain weekends. With half of the student body lacking cars as well as any plans for Friday night, how is the average Oxford student expected to have fun on those dead weekends? Most students feel that taking the 10 PM shuttle to the Frat Row is an easy solution. Eagle Row is lined with frat houses hosting parties for Emory students every weekend. Many students see this as the perfect way to cure the Oxford plague of boredom, or so it seems.

I distinctly recall my first trip to Frat Row. I remember not knowing what to expect, as it was my first college-party experience. The night started out with me riding the cramped shuttle for an hour to the Atlanta campus, followed by my friends and I walking up and down Frat Row ‘trying to get into’ frat houses. Apparently, the ratio of one boy to one girl is not sufficient to get  into certain frat parties. I was personally unaware of the need for the company of a specific number of women to be allowed to enter a party; I thought they were open to everyone. Once my friends and I finally entered a frat house, it was clear that everyone at the party had been drinking and were making irrational decisions, to say the least. After thirty minutes of being shoved around by drunken people, we were evacuated from the house because the police had shown up. From there, we decided that the Frat Row experience that night was not for us.

While there are many other illegal and immoral qualities of Frat Row that disinterest certain students, one thing is for sure: the Emory student body carries an understanding that you have to be drunk to have fun at Frat Row. When asked about her experiences at Frat Row, an Oxford freshman, said “It seems like if you’re not drunk, it won’t be as fun.” With the vast majority of Oxford students being under the drinking age, the question becomes, how does one have fun on Frat Row without being drunk?

When asked why he made the trip to Frat Row earlier this year, Rohit Rajendran, a non-drinking freshman, remarked, “I went once because I had never been [to Frat Row] before and I wanted to check it out to see what it was all about. . . It honestly wasn’t that fun; it was kinda disgusting”. I find it interesting how despite the obvious disgust people express when mentioning Frat Row, some students who choose to stay sober continue to visit the row.

Why then do so many Oxford students choose to travel for a total of two hours, risk not getting into the frat house of their choice and not be able to enjoy their night?

I believe the boredom that sometimes plagues the Oxford community has a cure. One can participate in the many activities that are held on campus. The Student Activities Committee hosts a myriad of events such as Fall Formal and the Spring Concert and the SCAC hosts four Tavern Parties throughout the year. Students can also rent and split the cost of a Zipcar to explore Atlanta or even just watch a movie with a group of friends. Although it may take a little creativity and thinking to decide on what to do on Friday nights at Oxford, my advice to those complaining about Oxford’s dull campus is this: nobody ever said fun has to be illegal.

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