Learning the Language
Common Terms for the Greek Community
|Active: a formal initiated member of a fraternity
|Alumna: a sorority member who has graduated
|Alumnus: a fraternity member who has graduated
|Badge(pin): the insignia that designates your
|Bid: a formal invitation to join a Greek organization
|Big Brother/ Big Sister: An active member assigned
to be the personal mentor for a new member.
|Brother: a term used when referring to other
members of a Fraternity
|Call/Chant: A vocal sound (sometimes high-pitched)
used by members of cultural based Greek organizations
to acknowledge one another
|Chapter: name for the local organization of
a national fraternity/sorority
|Chapter Advisor: An alumnus/alumna or faculty/staff
member who serves in an advisory role to provide guidance
to the organization.
|Colony: A newly formed affiliate of a national
organization that has not yet received its charter.
The members of a colony are referred to as "founders."
|Crossed: The actual date of initiation into
a cultural Greek organization. The term is used to represent
the symbolic crossing of the burning sands
|Exchange: A theme party with a fraternity and
a sorority. A formal exchange held at the end of Recruitment
Week is called a PREFERENCE PARTY or simply PREF.
|Fraternity: a Greek organization for men
|Greek: a member of a fraternity or sorority
|Hazing: Mental or physical abuse or harassment
of a member. Hazing is prohibited by university policy,
State law, and the policies of national fraternities
|House Corporation: Alumni organization which
owns and/or manages a chapter house.
|Intake: The membership recruitment and induction
process for the National Pan-Hellenic Council (historically
African-American fraternities and sororities)
|Interfraternity Council (IFC): the representative
body governing fraternities
|Initiation: the traditional ritual, which brings
the new member into full membership
|Legacy: a prospective member who has a family
member in the same fraternity or sorority
|Line: The members of a cultural Greek organization
new member class
|National Panhellenic Conference (NPC): the representative
body of national sororities
|National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC): the representative
body governing national historically black Greek organizations
|Neophyte: A new member of a cultural Greek organization
|New Member/Associate: a member who has not been
initiated (Some organizations use other terms such as
PLEDGE, ASSOCIATE, CANDIDATE, OR LINE BROTHER/SISTER)
- One who has been accepted as a probationary member
of a sorority or fraternity but has not yet been initiated.
Collectively, the New Members who join the same semester
are called the NEW MEMBER CLASS OR PLEDGE CLASS.
|New Member Education Process: The time period
in which candidates for active membership (or new members)
learn about the organization and participate in brotherhood/sisterhood
|Order of Omega: An national honor society recognizing
fraternity and sorority members who excel in academic
achievement, Greek leadership and campus involvement.
|New Member Pin: a pin that designates a new
member of a Greek organization
|New Member Recruitment: the continual process
of recruiting members for a Greek organization (usually
IFC and NPC)
|Philanthropy: the chapters specific charitable
organization(s) that they donate money and volunteer
|Recruitment (sometimes called RUSH): The membership
recruitment process. Potential New Members are sometimes
referred to as RUSHEES. MU has a deferred recruitment
policy. Deferred recruitment means that in order to
join a fraternity or sorority a student must have at
least 12 MU credits or transfer credits (first year
students can join second semester of their first year)
|Recruitment Counselor (Rho Chi): a disaffiliated
member of an organization who assists potential members
through the recruitment process.
|Ritual: the traditional ceremonies of a chapter,
which are usually secret
|Potential: a term for men or women being recruited
by a Greek organization
|Sister: a term used when referring to other
members of a sorority
|Sorority: a Greek organization for women
|Strict Silence: not discussing recruitment with
non-sorority members outside of the recruitment events
|Stroll/Step Show: A line dance done by members
of cultural Greek organizations (usually at a party
or step show)
|Sisterhood/Brotherhood: Intangible, yet the
most cherished of assets among all Greek members, sisterhood
and brotherhood are the foundations of sorority and
fraternity life. Both are difficult to explain, but
they can be basically characterized by their most common
and identifiable element.
|Scholarship: The Greek community at MU strives
for high scholarship. A minimum grad point average is
required by sororities and fraternities in order to
become an initiated member. Each chapter has a scholarship
program to provide incentives, coordinate study hours,
and to encourage members to achieve their highest academic
|Leadership: Many leadership opportunities are available within the Greek community. Not only are officer positions available in each chapter, but also Greek affiliation opens doors to organizations all over campus.
|Community Service: Philanthropies provide opportunities
for Greeks to participate in community and national
service projects. Not all donations are monetary. Many
hours of time have been donated as well. All of these
experiences are very rewarding and result in a great
sense of accomplishment.
|Alumni/Alumnae: Sorority and Fraternity membership
is a lifetime association. After your graduation you
will always have a group to return to for homecoming
and alumni weekends. Alumni are the backbone of sororities
and fraternities. The contribute experience to strengthen
each chapter. They also can be contributing factors
in your life and future endeavors.
|Social: The Greek community at MU offers a well-rounded
social life, and provides the opportunity for developing
lifelong friendships. Many activities are organized
not only to become closer to ones sisters and
brothers, but to members of other chapters as well.
Men and women get together for original theme parties,
and informal or formal dances that provide many rewarding
and fun memories.
|Greek Week: A special week each year where al
the Greeks come together. This week includes such events
as Greek games, tug-of-war, and Greek Airband.