Greek Glossary

Active: A member who has been initiated into lifelong fraternity or sorority membership and is active at the collegiate level.

Alumni/Alumnae: Initiated fraternity or sorority members who have graduated from college.

Associate: A non-initiated member in a fraternity or sorority that employs the associated member program.

Bid: An invitation to join a fraternity or sorority.

Big Brother or Sister: An active member of a fraternity or sorority who serves as a sponsor, mentor and special friend to a New Member, guiding them through their New Member program

Chapter: A local group of the larger national organization, an individual fraternity or sorority.

Function: A social gathering for two or more fraternities or sororities.

Greek: Any member of a Greek-letter social organization (sorority or fraternity)

Initiation: The formal ceremony or traditional ritual that marks the beginning of active membership.

Interfraternity Council (IFC): The governing body of fraternities at the University of West Georgia. IFC operated under the affiliation requirements of the National Interfraternity Conference (NIC).

Legacy: The brother or sister, son or daughter, or grandson or granddaughter of a fraternity or sorority member. Each chapter has its own policy regarding legacies.

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

North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC): A national organization composed of 66 national member men’s fraternities and alumni associations.

National Panhellenic Conference (NPC): A national organization composed of 26 member sororities, each of which is autonomous as a social. Greek-letter society of women.

National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC): A national organization composed of four sororities and five fraternities whose membership is historically African-American, and locally the governing council for six organizations.

New Member: A member of a fraternity or sorority who has not been initiated.

New Member Program: New Members learn the history, ideals and values of fraternity and sorority life. The time frame of the New Member Program varies for each chapter.

Panhellenic: The governing body of sororities at the University of West Georgia. Panhellenic operated under the direction of the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC).

Pin: (two types) the active pin is worn on the chest designating an initiated member of a certain Greek organization. A new member or pledge pin is simpler and is used to designate a new member.

Recommendation (REC): A written recommendation for a Potential New Member from an alumnae (a) of a chapter. Letters of recommendation do NOT guarantee a bid from any sorority.

Ritual: The traditional ceremonies of a chapter which are usually secret.

Membership Recruitment/Rush/Intake: The activity by which chapters seek new members.

Quota: The specified number of Potential New Members to which each sorority may extend a bid.