Greek Glossary

Active  

Alumna/Alumnus

Associate/New Member

Bid

Big Brother/Sister

Brother/Sister

Calls

Chapter

 Charter

Candlelight

Colony

Colors

Crest

Divine Nine

Dues

Formal Recruitment

Frat

Gamma Chi

Greek

 

 

Handshake

Hazing

House Director/

House Mom/House Manager

IFC

Inactive Member

Initiated Member

Initiation

Intake

Informational Meeting

Interest Meeting

Lavaliere

Legacy

National

National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC)

Neophyte

New Member

New Member Presentation

On the Yard

Open Recruitment

 

Order of Omega

Panhellenic Council  

Philanthropy

Pin  

 New Member

Potential Member

Preference Card

Prophyte  

Quota  

Ritual  

Sands

Signs

Snap Bidding  

Social

Soror

Stepping

Strolling

Total/Ceiling

 

 

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Active - An initiated member of a fraternity or sorority.

Alumna/Alumnus - An initiated member who has graduated.

Associate/New Member- a member of a fraternity or sorority not yet initiated.

Bid - A formal invitation to join a chapter.

Big Brother/Sister - An active who befriends and becomes like an older brother/sister to a new member.

Brother/Sister - A term used by active members in a chapter when referring to each other.

Calls – a unique vocal expression attributed by an NPHC an organization.

  • Please Do: Enjoy listening to the unique calls of the groups.
  • Please Don’t: Repeat an organization’s particular call or response. It is considered a sign of disrespect.
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Chapter - The local collegiate group of a national fraternity or sorority.

Charter - the official document recognizing a chapter’s status by the national organization.

Candlelight - A ceremony in which a member reveals having been given a lavaliere, fraternity pin, or engagement ring.

Colony- status of a new chapter before installation.

Colors - The official pair or triad of colors that represent a specific Greek organization.

Crest - Insignia used by sorority and fraternity members. Most Greek organizations reserve the crest for initiated members only. Each crest has hidden, secret meanings behind it. Also known as a coat or arms or shield.

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Divine Nine: Term used to describe the nine NPHC affiliate organizations. Also the title of the book that chronicles the history of NPHC groups.

Dues - Charge of joining a fraternity or sorority. Covers costs of operation, formal events, activities and other events.

Formal Recruitment - A time when fraternities/sororities sponsor activities seeking potential new members.

Frat- NPHC term used to refer to one’s fraternity or a fraternity brother.

Gamma Chi - Fraternity/sorority members who have disassociated themselves from their chapters during recruitment to answer any question a potential member may have about Greek membership.

Greek - Any member of a social fraternity or sorority.

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Handshake - It's a special handshake unique to each organization. Only initiated members will know the handshake. Also known as a Grip.

Hazing - Any degrading activity that would cause mental or physical harm to an individual or group. This is completely unacceptable to any Valdosta State University student.

House Director/House Mom/House Manager - A person hired to live in the chapter house and supervise the chapter members.

IFC - Interfraternity Council; a representative governing body of fraternities affiliated with the North American Interfraternity Conference.

Inactive Member - A member who has elected to become inactive in sorority or fraternity life. They have no say or participation in chapter activities.

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Initiated Member - Any member who has gone through the initiation ceremony and is currently enrolled.

Initiation - A formal ceremony that brings about the transition from new member to initiated member.

Intake - Term for the process by which NPHC members are selected to become new members of an organization. Much more secretive than recruitment or rush, but generally includes an application and an interview process, followed by an educational program done at the regional level conducted by alumni, then an initiation (generally known as “crossing”). The period of membership intake varies from chapter to chapter, but can not exceed 10 weeks.

Informational Meeting- An informational is a program usually hosted by NPHC organizations that strictly gives information to the general body about an organization.

Interest Meeting- A meeting usually hosted by NPHC for prospective members to receive information about and meet members of a Greek organization.

Lavaliere - A necklace with Greek letters on it.

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Legacy - A person whose parent, sibling, or grandparent is an alumna or active member of a sorority.

National - A term referring to the central organization of a given fraternity or sorority.

National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) - The governing organization that promotes the historically African-American fraternities and sororities that belong to the National Pan-Hellenic Council.

Neophyte - Term used by NPHC when referring to new members.

New Member - A person who has accepted an invitation to a chapter and has not yet been initiated.

New Member Presentation - An event referred to by the NPHC where new members are presented to the Valdosta State University community. Also referred as: Coming Out Show/Probate/Roll Out.

On the Yard – an NPHC phrase meaning that a chapter is currently chartered on campus.

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Open Recruitment - Membership selection process that occurs throughout the academic year; also known as continuous open bidding among Panhellenic sororities and fraternities.

Order of Omega - national honor society that recognizes and promotes Greek leadership and scholastics.

Panhellenic Council - The governing organization that promotes and represents sororities belonging to the National Panhellenic Conference.

Philanthropy - A charitable project sponsored by a fraternity or sorority

Pin - The active pin is worn on the chest designating an initiated member of a certain chapter. A new member pin is similar and is used to designate a new member of a chapter.

New Member - A person who has accepted an invitation to a chapter and has not yet been initiated.

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Potential Member - An undergraduate college man/woman who participates in the recruitment process.

Preference Card - A card signed by a potential new member after the last day of Panhellenic recruitment, indicating the potential new member’s first, second, and third preference of a Greek organization.

Prophyte - An older member of an NPHC organization.

Quota - The specified number of new members each sorority can accept.

Ritual - Sacred and inspirational ceremonies used to inspire and educate members about the importance of the organization.

Sands - An NPHC term for members of your new member class. Comes from the phrase "cross the burning sands" which means to cross over (Become initiated) into full membership.

Signs – a unique display expressed by hand symbols by Greek organizations.

  • Please do: Enjoy the viewing of the various signs.
  • Please don’t: Emulate an organization’s sign. It is a sign of disrespect
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Snap Bidding - The direct offering of a bid from a chapter to a potential member between the time bids are distributed and new member day activities begin during Panhellenic recruitment.

Social - A get-together with another group for a party, dinner, or other fun occasion.

Soror - NPHC term referring to one’s sorority sister.

Stepping- a form of percussive dance in which the participant's entire body is used as an instrument to produce complex rhythms and sounds through a mixture of footsteps, spoken word, and hand claps. Though stepping may be performed by an individual, it is generally performed by groups of three or more, often in arrangements that resemble military formations

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Strolling – NPHC Organizational members move together in a line expressing pride for their organization. In this line, members may express their pride through use of their organization’s call, sign or historical information, ritual/custom dances, etc. All of this is done through movements that are unique to a particular organization.

  • Please Do: Enjoy watching, as each organization has a unique way and style of strolling.
  • Please Don’t: Emulate the stroll or cut in between members of the line. That is considered a sign of disrespect

Total/Ceiling - The maximum number of members a sorority can have. Sororities can only exceed total during formal recruitment, if for example, taking new members would put them at 180 members and total is 140. If a sorority has obtained quota during recruitment and is still below total, that sorority may continue to ask new members to join.

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