How Do You Pursue Fraternity/Sorority Life?
Making the decision to pursue membership in a fraternity or sorority is indeed an important one, and should not be made casually. Membership is a privilege and like any successful organization, there are obligations which accompany membership.
For freshmen, the first opportunity to actively participate in membership recruitment events occurs in January. At the start of the spring semester, a student must have completed at least 12 credit hours, be a currently enrolled full-time undergraduate student, have earned a minimum GPA of 2.5, and be in good judicial standing with the University to be eligible to participate in Recruitment.
Spring recruitment is the centralized process in which Fraternity/Sorority leaders plan and implement specific events for potential new members and active members to meet and highlight the unique components of one fraternity to another. The process is mutually selective which means that potential new members make decisions about returning to a future chapter event while the chapters are extending invitations for future events to men and women they are interested in extending a bid to. Though the process is not perfect, potential new members who remain objective, genuine, and intentional about their decisions, are most pleased with the outcome of Recruitment.
Formal Sorority Recruitment
In January each year, Sorority Recruitment starts prior to classes beginning. This then requires that women return to campus early. For 2016-2017 academic year, here are the key dates: Registration is open September 1 – December 1, 2016 online. Registration is required to participate in recruitment and there is a fee to participate.
- Monday January 9, 2017 – Active sorority women can begin moving back into their rooms.
- Wednesday January 11, 2017 – Women participating in recruitment need to return by 5pm on this day. Women who wish to return before that date need to make arrangements with the Residents Life Office as the Women’s Panhellenic Association can only ensure room access while recruitment is actually being held.
- Wednesday January 11, 2017 – Welcome dinner for women participating in recruitment in the DUC followed by a mandatory meeting.
- Thursday January 12, 2017 – Round 1 of Formal Recruitment – Arete Round. Women will visit all 9 chapters.
- Friday January 13, 2017 – Round 2 of Formal Recruitment – Philanthropy Round. Women will be invited back to a MAXIMUM of 7 chapters on this day. Schedules are not created until – Round 2 of Formal Recruitment – Philanthropy Round. Women will be invited back to a MAXIMUM of 6 chapters on this day. Schedules are not created until Friday Morning night. Women will get their schedules first thing night. Women will get their schedules first thing upon arriving Friday morning.
- Saturday January 14, 2017 – Round 3 of Formal Recruitment – Sisterhood Round. Women will be invited back to a MAXIMUM of 5 chapters on this day. Schedules will not be available until Saturday morning.
- Sunday January 15, 2017 – Round 4 of Formal Recruitment – Preference Round. Women will be invited back to a MAXIMUM of 2 chapters on this day. Schedules will not be available until Sunday morning.
- Monday January 16, 2017 – Bid/Unity Day. Bids (chapter invitations) will be distributed in the morning, followed by a Women’s Panhellenic Association Unity ceremony. Chapter bid day activities will occur from 12pm-5pm that afternoon.
Once registered, potential new members will be assigned to a Recruitment Counselor, or Rho Chi, who disaffiliates from her own chapter in order to serve as an unbiased, pressure-free resource for the women. If a woman is not eligible because of grades or judicial reasons, a staff member from Campus Life will contact that woman over winter break once grades are posted. Potential New Members begin by attending events hosted by all sororities and throughout the four rounds, narrows down her preferences and attends fewer sorority events, however potential new members are required to attend every event she is invited to. On the final night of recruitment, potential new members rank their top two sorority choices but will not receive more than ONE BID for membership. A high percentage of women receive a sorority bid for membership, but there is no guarantee that all women will receive a bid.
Letters of recommendation are NOT required to participate in formal or informal recruitment. If an alumni of one of the eight national organizations would like to submit a reference form, they can do so by contacting their national office to get the proper form and instructions on how to submit the form. Some chapters encourage letters, but again they are not required or necessary.
If sending a letter/forms to a chapter on campus, you can use the following address:
Attn: Recruitment Chair
1 Brookings Drive
Campus Box 1068
St. Louis, MO 63130
This is the normal breakdown of registration fees each year:
- $100 Early-Bird Registration Fee Sept 1 – Oct 31
- $125 Regular Registration Fee Nov 1-30th.
Registration Will Open September 1st and closes on December 1st.
If you are interested in joining our community, please email If you are interested in joining our community, please email email@example.com
and we will provide you information about future opportunities.
Formal Fraternity Recruitment
Formal Fraternity Recruitment events occur at the end of January once classes have begun. To improve the experience for interested students, chapters will be hosting an open house and an open event in the Fall semester.
All dates and information are being finalized this summer and will be updated soon.
General information about the format can be found below:
Prior to receiving bids, men who did not meet the minimum academic or judicial requirements will be notified. Interested men will find posters around campus, which indicate when and where each fraternity is hosting Recruitment events over the three-week period. Men will pick and choose the events they wish to attend until the end of Recruitment. Typically there is a period of about 1-2 weeks of open events where anyone can attend and then most fraternities have a week of closed events that are by invitation only. After events have stopped, potential new members may receive one bid or multiple bids to join different fraternities. There is a 24 hour no-contact period to give the potential new member some time to make his decision. Bid acceptance day takes place two days after bid extension and this is when the potential new member accepts his bid to one fraternity. For more information on men’s recruitment, please visit the IFC Website
Informal Fall Recruitment
Some fraternities and sororities host a fall membership drive in which upper-class students are eligible to participate, provided the minimum academic requirements have been met. It is important to note that the only opportunity to attend and get to know ALL Greek organizations is in January. Fall recruitment is informal and left up to each chapter to plan if they so desire. Typically not all sororities participate in informal recruitment, but if you are an upperclassmen who has questions about women’s informal recruitment options, please contact the Women’s Panhellenic Association at firstname.lastname@example.org
. Information about men’s fall recruitment can be found on the Interfraternity Council webpage located under the “Fraternity Life” tab location in the menu bar on the left. Please note, first year students cannot join unti their second semester. Just like Formal Fraternity Recruitment, men interested in joining a chaper MUST register prior to receiving a bid from a chapter. Registration for fall recruitment will open on Mid August 2015. At that point in time, the link for the registration site will be posted on this page.
National Pan-Hellenic Council Intake
Washington University in St. Louis does not have National Pan-Hellenic Council organizations that are specific to our campus. Many of the organizations have city-wide chapters in which membership is made up from students attending various colleges and universities within St. Louis. While the organizations are not recognized on any one specific campus, Washington University does work with our students in these organizations to aid them in reserving spaces for meetings, intake events, and educational programs. If you have questions or would like more information about any of the city-wide organizations, please contact the chapters using the websites listed by their chapter names.
Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.
Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.
Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.
Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc.
For general information about the National Pan-Hellenic Council, please visit http://www.nphchq.org/.