Your Guide to Joining a Fraternity or Sorority at the University of Mississippi
The following is a guide to help you better understand the different social Greek letter organizations at Ole Miss. If, after reading through this guide, you still have a questions, please email us at UMSGreeks@olemiss.edu, and we will do our best to respond to you as soon as possible.
What is the Interfraternity Council (IFC)? National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC)? Panhellenic Council (NPC)?
All three are the governing bodies of the fraternities and sororities at the University of Mississippi affiliated with the IFC, NPC and NPHC. IFC and NPC participate in Formal Recruitment, while NPHC groups have a process called Intake.
Fraternities affiliated with the IFC are Alpha Tau Omega (ATO), Beta Theta Pi (Beta), Chi Psi, Delta Psi, Kappa Alpha (KA), Kappa Sigma (Kappa Sig), Phi Delta Theta (Phi Delt), Phi Kappa Psi (Phi Psi), Phi Kappa Tau (Phi Tau), Pi Kappa Alpha (PIKE), Pi Kappa Phi (Pi Kapp), Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE), Sigma Chi, Sigma Nu and Sigma Pi.
NPHC is made up of the nine historically and traditionally African-American fraternities and sororities. Those eight groups represented at the University of Mississippi are Alpha Phi Alpha Inc., Kappa Alpha Psi Inc., Omega Psi Phi Inc., Phi Beta Sigma Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Inc., Sigma Gamma Rho Inc., Iota Phi Theta Inc. and Zeta Phi Beta Inc.
Sororities affiliated with the NPC are Alpha Delta Pi (ADPi), Alpha Omicron Pi (AOPi), Alpha Phi (APhi), Chi Omega (Chi O), Delta Delta Delta (Tri Delta), Delta Gamma (DG), Kappa Alpha Theta (Theta), Kappa Delta (KD), Kappa Kappa Gamma (Kappa), Phi Mu and Pi Beta Phi (Pi Phi).
What and when is Intake?
Intake is the process of membership selection used by groups belonging to the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC).
A student does not have to register with Fraternity & Sorority Life to participate in Intake. While the process is different for each organization, all groups do require that selected members have a certain GPA, community service hours and participation in a Greek Forum, hosted each semester by NPHC. Look for interest meeting notices posted around the Student Union.
What and when is recruitment?
Recruitment is the formal process for membership selection for fraternities or sororities affiliated with the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) or the Interfraternity Council (IFC).
You must be registered with Fraternity & Sorority Life to participate. Formal recruitment begins a few weeks after the first day of classes each fall semester.
How long does being a new member take and what are the requirements?
It varies among all groups, but no new member period lasts longer than 10-12 weeks. It has been the recent national trend among all groups to initiate after eight weeks of new member period. Typically, NPHC groups initiate after a shorter new member period. Most organizations will require some mandatory study halls and new member meetings. All groups also have a one-time new initiate fee. For more information, ask one of the members about the financial obligations of membership while visiting during Recruitment or Intake processes.
What is an interest meeting?
NPHC groups sometimes hold interest meetings in which they discuss their national and chapter’s history, philanthropy and requirements to become a member. For more information on when each group will be holding interest meetings, visit the NPHC organization websites or call Fraternity & Sorority Life at 662-915-7609.
What about letters of recommendations?
Recommendation letters can be sent for any organization within all three Greek councils; however, they are typically a part of the formal recruitment process for NPC.
Do I send a picture and transcript with each letter? How many do I need? For women considering participating in Formal Recruitment each fall, it is important to start thinking about letters of recommendations (or “recs”) ahead of time. Most chapters have rules requiring they give top consideration to those applicants who have letters of recommendation on file. You can find more information regarding recommendation letters on the individual sorority websites under the “Chapter” tab of each council’s website.
For NPC, an alumnae of the organization to which you are applying should write the letter of recommendation. If a student does not know any alumnae, she may contact her local alumnae Panhellenic association for referrals or the sorority’s national website. It is a good idea to submit a résumé and a picture when asking someone to write a letter for you. Do not include transcripts or test scores with recommendation letters. Letters of recommendation must be sent to the chapter addresses listed within the Panhellenic website, not Fraternity & Sorority Life. To maximize your possibilities of joining a sorority, you will need to have a recommendation sent to each sorority.
Is there a minimum GPA for the different organizations?
Each council has different grade-point average requirements.
IFC fraternities must have a minimum 2.7 cumulative GPA to participate in Formal Recruitment, receive a membership invitation anytime during the year, and be initiated into a fraternity. Some groups have higher GPA requirements. You are encouraged to ask this question during the Formal Recruitment rounds.
NPHC chapters must have between a 2.5 and 2.6 minimum GPA from the University of Mississippi to pledge, and actives must maintain a minimum GPA of 2.5.
NPC sororities do not have a GPA requirement, as they have grade zones that help potential new members self-identify the probability of not receiving a membership invitation due to academics. There is currently no GPA requirement to participate in Formal Recruitment for NPC as set by the University of Mississippi. This does not, however, apply to the chapters’ individual requirements to extent a bid. The chapter average to extend a bid is a 3.0 GPA. Women who have below a 3.0 GPA are advised they are at a greater risk to be released from the process. With the number of women who go through the Formal Recruitment process, GPA tends to be a way for the chapters to assess potential new members. Being released from recruitment or receiving a bid through the process is due to a wide variety of factors that are ultimately up to the chapters. GPA is only one of those factors; however, significant weight is placed on GPA. To reiterate, women with a GPA below 3.0 are at a greater risk of release. Women who have below a 3.0 GPA are advised to participate in the Formal Recruitment process the following year after taking a year to get acclimated to the university and achieve higher grades.
Do I have to register for Recruitment with IFC or Panhellenic? What about NPHC Intake?
You must be registered online to participate in Panhellenic or IFC formal recruitment. To participate in NPHC Intake, you have to sign up and attend the Greek Forum at the beginning of each semester to be eligible for that respective semester.
How should I act and what should I know before I join? How can I increase my chances of joining a Greek organization?
Act like yourself! You want to know what the fraternity or sorority is like as much as its members want to know the real you. Look at all the chapters with an open mind. The No. 1 reason people choose not to join a fraternity or sorority is because they did not get invited back to their first or only choice. Remember, the group you decide to join is going to be the best on campus. Stay positive and don’t criticize other potential new members. Likewise, don’t listen to actives who criticize other chapters.
What are the financial obligations of joining a sorority or fraternity?
Since we have three councils and 33 organizations, it is difficult to give an average for all organizations.
Greek Forum for NPHC is a requirement if you would like to go through Intake in a particular semester. The cost for Greek Forum is $20. NPHC organizations’ dues vary from chapter to chapter. There is usually a higher front-end cost for students interested in NPHC; be sure if you are thinking about one of the NPHC organizations, ask how much it would cost each year.
The registration fee for Formal Recruitment (IFC and NPC) is due when you submit your application form online. The costs associated with the individual chapter dues are fairly subjective. We highly encourage potential new members to ask about the financial costs of each chapter during the first round of recruitment. Financial commitment is important when accepting membership to a fraternity or sorority, so be prepared by asking organizations up front what their financial obligations are. Membership costs typically include membership fees, meal plan, social events and T-shirts. For some groups, some of these costs are separate from the main dues. But please note, each organization is different; this is simply an average estimate. It should be noted that after the first year, dues are somewhat less because of the costs associated with initiation. For more information, ask one of the members while visiting during the recruitment or intake processes.
If you have any more questions regarding IFC, NPC or NPHC, you may contact Fraternity & Sorority Life at 662- 915-7609.