Recognition Policy for Fraternities and Sororities

This policy constitutes the University procedure for the conferral or withdrawal of recognition of fraternities and sororities.  It applies to all social fraternities and sororities, whether residential or non-residential.  This Recognition Policy may be amended or rescinded or superseded at any time by action of the Board of Trustees.  Benefits and privileges extended to recognized fraternities and sororities under this, or any other University policy, are subject to the availability of University resources for the purposes specified and do not constitute entitlements.


Recognition is the formal process by which Cornell determines whether a social fraternity or sorority (residential or non-residential, occupying property owned by Cornell or not, located on or off campus) may avail itself of certain privileges within the gift of the University.  Once recognized, a fraternity or sorority may enroll members from the student body, in accordance with Trustee legislation.  It may identify its charter with Cornell and be eligible for the benefits described herein and the privileges accorded to other recognized student organizations.

Recognition serves only the limited purposes described herein and is not intended in any way to alter the legal relationship between Cornell and the fraternity or sorority.  Each fraternity or sorority is, and remains, an independent legal entity responsible for its own actions and for meeting its own legal duties and obligations. It is understood that Cornell does not, by this action, assume any legal responsibility for the supervision or control of fraternity or sorority activities, but reserves the right to withdraw the privileges conferred by this Policy and to take such other actions as may be lawful and appropriate.  Recognition pursuant to this policy does not constitute an endorsement by Cornell of a particular fraternal organization or its activities.

Recognition Policy PDF