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Is Greek Life right for me? Temple University Russell Conwell Center.

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1 Is Greek Life right for me? Temple University Russell Conwell Center

2 What is Greek Life? Joining a Fraternity/Sorority is much different that joining a normal Temple club or organization. Often, joining Greek Life consists of rushing that Fraternity/Sorority and then pledging, a period in which you go through new member education before you are initiated, or officially become a member. This online workshop is intended to help you decide if Social Greek Life is right for you by presenting a brief history, defining key terms, explaining the rushing process, and highlighting key online resources.

3 History of Social Greek Life Phi Beta Kappa Society, founded on December 5, 1776 at the College of William and Mary is generally recognized as the first Greek-letter society in North America. John Heath founded this society because he was denied admission into two other society’s at William and Mary. It was originally intended for male upperclassmen. As it developed, it became more of an honor to become a member than a social selection. Today, Phi Beta Kappa is an academic honor society.

4 National Fraternities Following the founding of Phi Beta Kappa, numerous other Fraternities began to form and open chapters at different campuses. It wasn’t until Sigma Phi opened at 2 nd chapter that the idea of national Fraternities developed. Before Sigma Phi, most Fraternities were founded as local or regional. From there, Fraternities experienced explosive growth as new chapters opened nation wide. During the Civil War, Fraternities saw a decline in membership, but saw membership pick back up following the war.

5 Sororities As Fraternities were solely for men, women came up with other options to form their own societies. Originally founded as Latin literary societies, sororities eventually developed from these groups, such as Alpha Delta Pi and Phi Mu. I.C. Sorosis (later called Pi Beta Phi), founded at Monmouth College, is the first Sorority founded on the model of the men’s Fraternity. Kappa Alpha Theta became the first Greek letter women’s sorority. But, it wasn’t until 1874 that the term sorority was coined. Before then, these organizations were called “women’s fraternities” or “fraternities for women.”

6 Greek Life Today In 2013, there are dozens of Fraternities and Sororities, each with a different purpose. Some are purely social, while others are honorary, based on service, professional interest, or a combination. On the national scale, there are 4 governing boards who look over the social fraternities and sororities, which we will cover in a later section. Because there are so many different types, who do you know which to join? First, lets break down some common terms…

7 Terms: There are many terms and phrases that are used in Greek Life that may be “Greek” to others who are non- members. Some common terms are: pledging, philanthropy, chapter. Go to this website and check out the various terms associated with Greek Life: Greek Life Terms Also, it is important to know the Greek Alphabet as a member: Greek Alphabet

8 The National Governing Boards When looking to join a Fraternity/Sorority, one must ask themselves what type they want to join. When it comes to Social Fraternities/Sororities, you may only join one, making the decision all the more important. You may join multiple others, such as an honorary or service Fraternity/Sorority as well as a social one. Social Fraternities and Sororities are governed by 4 different governing boards…

9 The National Governing Boards InterFraternity Council (IFC)InterFraternity Council Oversees the 60 plus National Social Fraternities Panhellinic Council Oversees the 20 plus National Social Sororities National Pan-hellinic Council(NPHC)National Pan-hellinic Council NPCH is a collaborative organization of nine historically African American, international Greek lettered fraternities and sororities. MultiGreek Council (MGC)MultiGreek Council is an umbrella council for eleven Multicultural Greek Letter Organizations established in Click on the names to go to a website to learn more!

10 Once you figure out… Once you figure out which organization is right for you, then the rushing and pledging process begins. This varies between each individual chapter and Fraternity/Sorority, but the overall process is the same. Depending on which council you are interested in, the process will vary.

11 Recruitment Recruitment is an opportunity to meet hundreds of your peers, get acquainted with campus, and finally begin your new life as a college student. Without a doubt, you will meet the men and women who will be your best friends during your college years and beyond. By participating in recruitment, you are taking the first step toward an active and enriching experience as a fraternity or sorority member. For IFC and Panhellenic chapters, this is the most common ways. IFC Fraternities normally have open recruitment in which you may join at any time, but Panehellenic Sororities normally only allow members in once or twice a year.

12 Membership Intake Early in the fall semester, the NPHC fraternities and sororities represented on campus present information about their individual chapters for prospective members. Each chapter will not begin its actual membership intake process until later in the academic year, as NPHC affiliated fraternities and sororities typically do not accept a student for membership until the student has completed at least hours of college credit with a minimum GPA. NPHC chapters embrace a lifetime commitment philosophy and aim to assure the continuance of academic achievement, political awareness, and community service. We strongly encourage those interested in the Membership Intake process to contact the respective NPHC and MGC organizations for more information.

13 So, I think I know which type… Once you’ve figured out which Social Fraternity/Sorority is right for you, you need to begin considering that individual chapter and see if it meets your needs. Don’t forget this is a mutual process! You should want to join them as much as they want you to join! If the feelings are one way, you might want to think twice.

14 Questions to ask: What are the dues? Time commitment? Recruitment/Intake process? Rushing/Pledging period? What are your values? Alumni support? What type of events do you do to promote brotherhood/sisterhood? What type of Fraternity/Sorority are you?

15 More information: Lambda 10 Project The Lambda 10 Project - National Clearinghouse for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Fraternity & Sorority Issues works to heighten the visibility of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender members of the college fraternity by serving as a clearinghouse for educational resources and educational materials related to sexual orientation and gender identity/expression as it pertains to the fraternity/sorority experience. FIPG – Risk Management Information on Risk Management Temple Greek Life Temple Greek Life Policies StopHazing.org

16 Are you ready? So, after reading all of this, is Greek Life right for you? What type do you like? This workshop could go on for hundreds of slides covering all aspects of Greek Life, but I hope this brief overview will help you make a decision. As always, follow up with Temple Greek Life for more information. Now that you’re done, you must take this quiz to get credit for this online workshop.quiz


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