Greek Speak

  • ACTIVATION: The traditional ritual when a new member gains full active membership within a fraternity.

    ACTIVE: A fully initiated member who has committed to a lifelong membership in a fraternity and is currently in college.

    ALL MEMBER ATTEND (AMA): A term used to denote events require attendance of all active members

    ALUMNUS (masculine, singular)/ALUMNA (feminine, singular): A man/woman who was an active member in a fraternity/sorority and has now graduated.

    ALUMNI (masculine, plural)/ALUMNAE (feminine, plural): A group of men/women who were active members of a fraternity/sorority and have now graduated.

    ASSOCIATION: The alumni board that gives guidance to the chapter and manages the finances and structure of the house.

    BARBEE TRUST: Marion O. "Pete" Barbee left his estate to Missouri FarmHouse which has now been invested in order to fund local scholarships/loans and pay for various house improvements.

    BID: An invitation to join a fraternity or sorority issued in writing directly from the fraternity to a rushee

    BIG SISTER/BIG BROTHER: An active member who sponsors, advises, and guides a new member through pledge ship and into active status.

    BROTHER: An initiated member of a fraternity. A term used by active members of a fraternity when referring to one another.

    CHAPTER: A chartered group recognized by a national fraternity or sorority organization. Within each organization, chapters are usually referenced via a Greek-letter order. For example, the founding chapter would be the "Alpha Chapter," and the second chapter is usually the "Beta Chapter."

    CHAPTER ADVISOR: An alumnus who establishes and maintains a close advisory relationship with a chapter and serves as a teacher, counselor and friend.

    COLONY: A student organization in the final stage prior to being installed as a chartered chapter of a Greek-letter organization.

    DEPLEDGE: The termination of a pledge's relationship with a Greek-letter organization.

    FRATERNITY: A Greek letter brotherhood of men bonded together by their ritual that contains the founding principles, ideals and aspirations of the group. The term "fraternity" can also be applied to women's organizations.

    FOUNDATION: The alumni board who controls the investments of Missouri FarmHouse. They invest all donations and manage the Barbee Trust.

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

    GREEK: A member of a fraternity or sorority.

    HAZING: Mental or physical degradation of any person.

    INDEPENDENT: A person who is not a member of a fraternity or sorority.

    INFORMAL RECRUITMENT: Recruitment without scheduled bidding or parties.

    INITIATION: The traditional ritual which brings the new member into full life-long membership of the Greek organization.

    INTERFRATERNITY COUNCIL (IFC): The central governing body found on all campuses that have nationally recognized men's fraternities.

    LAVALIERE: The term used when a member of a fraternity gives a Greek-letter charm to his girlfriend to wear.

    LEGACY: A potential member whose parents, siblings, or other direct relatives are a member of a particular fraternity or sorority.

    NEW MEMBER (PLEDGE): A term used to refer to a new member of a fraternity or a sorority who has accepted a bid to join. After the recruitment period, new members learn the history of their national and local chapters, learn the ideals and principles of the group, get to know their fellow new members and get to know the initiated members.

    NATIONAL INTERFRATERNITY CONFERENCE (NIC): The national group of 62 men's fraternities in North America.

    NATIONAL PANHELLENIC CONFERENCE (NPC): The national group of 26 women's sororities in North America.

    PANHELLENIC ASSOCIATION (PANHEL): The central governing body found on all Greek campuses that have nationally recognized women's sororities. The Greek word means "All-Greek".

    PHILANTHROPY: A community service or fund-raising effort to promote human and community welfare.

    PIN: There are two types of pins, the active pin or badge, a distinctive insignia worn on the chest designating an active member of a particular fraternity/sorority; or the new member pin, an insignia used to designate a new member of a particular fraternity/sorority.

    POTENTIAL MEMBER (RUSHEE): A person interested in becoming a member of a fraternity of sorority.

    RECOMMENDATION: A letter written by an alumnus to recommend a rushee for membership.

    RECRUITMENT: The time when fraternities and sororities recruit new members.

    RITUAL: An activity which bonds a fraternity or sorority together and is traditionally secret.

    RUSH: Term used for the period in which fraternities/sororities and potential members become acquainted.