Greek Definitions

  • ACE/BULLHORN – The first person of the line.
  • ACTIVE – an initiated member of a Greek organization who is currently still enrolled as an undergraduate.
  • ALUMNA - a sorority member who is no longer a student. The plural is Alumnae.
  • ALUMNUS ("Alum") - a fraternity member who is no longer a student. The plural is Alumni.
  • ANCHOR/TAIL – The last person of the line.
  • ASSOCIATE/NEW MEMBER – a member of a Greek organization who has not yet been initiated.BID - An invitation to join a fraternity or sorority.
  • BID MATCHING – a system for matching the choice of the potential member with the choice of the chapter.
  • BROTHER - an initiated member of a fraternity.
  • CALL – A unique vocal recognition for a particular organization; used to recognize one another.
  • CHAPTER - The campus group of a national organization. Within each organization, chapters are usually referenced via a Greek-letter order. For example, the founding chapter would be the "Alpha Chapter," and the second chapter is usually the "Beta Chapter."
  • CHAPTER ADVISOR - an alumnus/alumna who establishes and maintains a close advisory relationship with a chapter and serves as a teacher, counselor and friend.
  • COB – (Continuous Open Bidding) a continuous, open recruitment period with no specific, scheduled, system-wide activities.
  • COLONY - an approved student organization working toward recognition as a chartered chapter of a Greek-letter organization.
  • CONTACTS - Designated times for those participating in IFC recruitment, during which students have the opportunity to meet brothers in each fraternity and get a feel for which fraternities they like and how they may fit with their values and interests.
  • COMING OUT SHOW – A show used to introduce new members of the organization.
  • CROSSING/CROSSING OVER – The point of membership intake process when pledges officially become members.
  • DEAN OF PLEDGES (DP) – Person who oversees the membership intake process.
  • DEPLEDGE/DEACTIVATE - the termination of a new member's or initiated member’s relationship with a Greek-letter organization.
  • DRY RECRUITMENT - Alcohol is forbidden from all events associated with introducing the fraternity/sorority to new members.
  • FORMAL RECRUITMENT - the primary selection period of the year for first year students in the spring semester and uppperclass students. Specific scheduled events for entertaining and selecting new members is known as "Recruitment Week".
  • FRATER – A term used to identify members of the same fraternity; sometime used to refer to any fraternity man of an NPHC organization.
  • FRATERNITY - The name informally applied to a Greek-letter men’s organization.
  • GREENBOOK – (Manual of Information) the informal name for the handbook containing procedural, instructional and practical information about National Panhellenic Conference (NPC), college and alumnae Panhellenics. The handbook has green covers.
  • GREEK / GREEKS – a term applied to students affiliated with Greek-letter social fraternities and sororities.
  • HAZING - defined as an act that, as an explicit or implicit condition for initiation to, admission into, affiliation with, or continued membership in a group or organization, could be seen by a reasonable person as endangering the physical health of an individual or as causing mental distress to an individual through, for example, humiliating, intimidating, or demeaning treatment; destroys or removes public or private property; involves the consumption of alcohol, other drugs, or other substances; or violates any of the policies of the university.
  • INACTIVE MEMBER - An individual is still a member of the organization, but is denoted as "inactive" to designate that they have no longer participate in the day-to-day activities of the fraternity or sorority. This status usually has a time limit of 1 academic year or less.
  • INFORMATIONAL – A meeting held by a chapter for prospective members who are seeking general information about the organization.
  • INITIATION - A formal ceremony by which new members become initiated members.
  • INTAKE – The educational process that one goes through in order to become a member.
  • INTEREST MEETING – A formal meeting held by the organization for potential new members that details the application process and rules of the organization; generally geared to potential new members who have a serious interest.
  • INTERFRATERNITY COUNCIL (IFC) - The governing council made up of all fraternities on a campus.
  • JEWEL/PEARL – A founder of an NPHC organization.
  • LEGACY – the child, sibling or grandchild (or in some cases other relative) of an initiated fraternity or sorority member.
  • LINE – A group of members who are chosen to become initiated/inducted together in a particular organization.
  • LINE BROTHERS/SISTERS – Individuals who are members of the same intake class.
  • LOCAL FRATERNITY - "Local" - a Greek-letter group which exists on a campus but which has no affiliation with a national Greek organization.
  • MULTICULTURAL GREEK LETTER COUNCIL (MGLC) - The council made up of fraternities and sororities that are culturally based.
  • NATIONAL ASIAN PACIFIC ISLANDER AMERICAN PANHELLENIC ASSOCIATION (NAPA) – An association of nine (9) member Asian Interest fraternities and sororities.
  • NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF LATINO FRATERNAL ORGANIZATIONS (NALFO) – A governing body who oversees twenty-three (23) nationally recognized Latino-based fraternities and sororities.
  • NATIONAL PAN-HELLENIC COUNCIL (NPHC) – A governing body who oversees the nine (9) historically Black fraternities and sororities.
  • NEOPHYTE – A new member within a culturally-based organization; also referred to as “neos”; typically designated as such until another intake process occurs.
  • NEW MEMBER EDUCATOR– Person who oversees the membership intake process.
  • NORTH-AMERICAN INTERFRATERNITY CONFERENCE (NIC) - A group comprised from each of the 72 national men's fraternities whose purpose is to enrich the fraternity experience through advocacy, collaboration and education.
  • NATIONAL PANHELLENIC CONFERENCE (NPC) – A group composed of delegates from each of 26 national women’s fraternities who meet together periodically to discuss and rule on issues of common interest and concern.
  • PANHELLENIC ASSOCIATION (PA) - The governing council for all National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) sororitites on campus. The word Panhellenic means all-Greek.
  • PHILANTHROPY – an active effort, project or service to promote human welfare or the raising of funds to be donated for that purpose.
  • PINNING - designates the start of a new member process. The New Member wears a fraternity/sorority pin and at the moment of pinning, officially becomes a new member.
  • POTENTIAL MEMBER - a non-member, with a possible interest in affiliating with one organization who is eligible to participate in the fraternity or sorority recruitment events.
  • PROBATE – A show used to introduce new members of the organization.
  • PROPHYTE – A member who has experienced at least one intake process as a member of an organization.
  • QUOTA – the number of new members that Panhellenic sororities may accept during formal recruitment. This is determined by the College Panhellenic based on the number of potential members participating in a given recruitment period.
  • RECRUITMENT - A series of events offering members and potential members the opportunity to get to know each other.
  • RUSH/TEA – A formal meeting held by the organization for potential new members that details the application process and rules of the organization; generally geared to potential new members who have a serious interest.
  • SANDS – A word used to acknowledge other members that crossed over in other organizations or in the same organization, but a different chapter.
  • SHIP – Individuals who are members of the same intake class.
  • SISTER - an initiated member of a sorority.
  • SMOKER – A formal meeting held by the organization for potential new members that details the application process and rules of the organization; generally geared to potential new members who have a serious interest.
  • SNAP BIDDING – An option available to chapters not filling quota by bid matching during Formal Recruitment. This option extends only until matched bids are distributed.
  • SOROR – A term used to identify members of the same sorority; sometimes used to refer to any sorority woman of an NPHC organization.
  • SOVEREIGN RIGHTS – the basic rights of fraternities and sororities as private voluntary organizations, which cannot be precluded by other agents or entities. For example the right to be single gender organizations.
  • STEP – A series of complex, synchronous and precise rhythmic body movements performed to the tune of stomps, songs or chants created by organization members.
  • STROLLING – The traditional dance or “party walk” performed by culturally-based fraternities and/or sororities.
  • TOTAL – the allowable chapter size as determined by the College Panhellenic.
  • UNANIMOUS AGREEMENTS – The principles, procedures, and behavioral expectations that are binding for all NPC member organziations.