This project was created by Paige Szmodis, Mya Flood, Chloe Sheraden, and Tom Bantley for the Bears Make History course during the fall semester of 2017 at Ursinus College.
Many thanks to those who helped to facilitate this project, including Dr. Throop, Dr. McShane, Andy Prock, Carolyn Weigel, Christine Iannicelli, all of our guests, and our class for all of their feedback.
Glossary of Greek Life Terminology:
- Active: An initiated member of a fraternity or sorority chapter
- Alumna/Alumnus/Alumni: Any initiated member(s) of a sorority or fraternity who graduated or left college in good standing
- Bid: A formal invitation to a prospective new member to join a chapter
- Chapter: A group of officially chartered and recognized collegians at a given college or university
- Dead Organization: An organization that failed to recruit members, therefore losing all members with letters upon their graduation, thus losing their charter/chapter on the specific college campus. This can also apply to organizations and members that have been stripped of their charter due to disciplinary actions.
- Expansion/Extension Group/Rising chapter: A new organization waiting for official recognition from their national leadership to start a chapter on campus
- Formal Recruitment: A formal week of scheduled events held during fall and spring semesters
- Frat: Term used to refer to one's fraternity or a fraternity brother
- Greek: A term applied to all fraternities and sororities
- Greek Organization: A fraternity or sorority (social, honor, or professional)
- Initiation/Crossing: The formal ceremony where new members receive lifelong membership privileges in their chosen chapters
- Interest Group: A group of individuals on campus in the first stage of the process leading to installation as a chapter of a Greek-letter organization. These groups sometimes have a specific organization that they would like to become an expansion of
- Inter-Greek Council (Ursinus Igc): The Inter-Greek Council is a student governing group overseeing all of Greek life at Ursinus College
- Line: A group of new members in a specific chapter, in a specific semester
- New Member: An uninitiated potential member of a fraternity or sorority (formerly referred to as "pledge")
- New Member Education/Pledging: The process of educating a Potential New Member and preparing them for sisterhood/brotherhood
- Philanthropy: A charitable project sponsored by a fraternity, sorority, or the Greek community
- Potential New Member (PNM): A man or woman seeking membership in a sorority or fraternity (formerly referred to as "rushees")
- Recruitment: The new member selection process (formerly referred to as "rush")
- Rituals: Ceremonies celebrated and conducted by every chapter of sororities and fraternities
- Service: Actions performed to benefit others (e.g. mentoring, tutoring, assisting in retirement community, cleaning the beach, etc.)
UC San Diego, “Glossary of Greek Terms,” Greek Life, accessed December 4, 2018, https://students.ucsd.edu/student-life/involvement/greek-life/terms.html.