What is a fraternity?
A fraternity is a group of men working together toward common goals. Fraternities strive to develop their members’ individual talents and skills to better prepare them for life after graduation.
Approximately 26% of UGA students are fraternity and sorority members. Fraternity membership varies from 24 to 142 men, with an average chapter size of 90.
What is Fraternity Rush?
Rush is the term used for the recruitment period of new members for fraternities. Fall recruitment consists of several structured days that include an orientation meeting and the opportunity to visit each chapter house to meet members and learn more about fraternity life.
After visiting each chapter, potential new members are free to visit any of the chapters for the next few days during unstructured recruitment. Invitations (bids) to join a fraternity can be given out any time during the recruitment period. Official bids will be signed at the conclusion of the process.
What is a bid?
A bid is an invitation to join a fraternity. Bids may be extended to a potential new member after the fraternity has gotten to know him. Potential new members should not feel pressured or obligated to accept a bid. Potential new members may receive numerous bids from different fraternities but can only accept one. Potential new members are encouraged to meet as many fraternity men as possible and should not concentrate on obtaining a bid from a single fraternity. Rushing more than one fraternity allows a potential new member to meet many new people during the recruitment process, even if he does not receive or accept a bid from a group.
After receiving a bid, a man has 3 options:
a. Accept the bid - this does not become official until an IFC Bid Card is signed, either on the early signing day or at the end of the formal process
b. Hold the bid – you need not feel pressured to accept a bid immediately, but you should maintain communication with the fraternity regarding your interest
c. Decline the bid – it’s ok to decline the bid if you know you are not interested in joining that particular fraternity
Do not feel pressured to accept a bid if you are not certain of your decision. IFC recommends exploring as many options as possible and as many chapters as necessary until you are sure of your decision. Fraternity men should not put undue pressure on you to make a decision.
If you have any questions or concerns regarding this contact us at our office (706-542-4612) or after hours number (706-207-0779)
How do I register for fall recruitment?
On-line registration is mandatory for those planning to join a fraternity. Some fraternities extend bids throughout the summer. For those men accepting bids prior to the beginning of the formal recruitment process, registration is still mandatory but house tours are optional. Participation in the house tours is only mandatory for those men that have not already accepted a bid.
Registration will launch during the spring. To register for recruitment, simply visit the IFC webpage at www.uga.edu/ifc and follow the recruitment registration instructions. All registrants are required to pay a $100 registration fee. Requests for refunds will only be considered if received by August 1, 2016.
If you have questions about the registration process, please contact the Greek Life Office at 706-542-4612.
If I go through recruitment, do I have to join a fraternity?
Although approximately 85% of potential new members will join a fraternity during the fall semester, it is not required. Many fraternities also participate in Spring Recruitment in early January, and you may have the opportunity to join then as well. Groups may also continue to extend bids beyond the formal processes, but these opportunities are very limited.
What type of clothing should I wear during recruitment?
Individuals going through recruitment generally wear casual, khaki-type pants or shorts and a polo-type shirt. No suits or ties are required during recruitment.
Should I attend a summer recruitment event?
Individuals going through recruitment are not required to attend any summer events prior to the beginning of recruitment. Attendance at summer events is not required to receive a bid. Attending summer events, if possible, does provide you an opportunity to get to know the members prior to the formal process.
Overnight summer recruitment events (ex. beach weekends, lake weekends, etc) are not permitted by the Interfraternity Council or the Greek Life Office.
What if you are participating in the Freshman College Summer Experience or have other academic commitments?
Academic commitments and the Freshman College Summer Experience requirements may conflict with some summer recruitment events. Fraternities stress academic achievement and therefore, it is very important that potential new members honor all academic commitments. It is imperative that potential new members not miss any academic requirement or Freshman College Summer Experience commitment in order to attend a recruitment event. Please contact Greek Life (706-542-4612) with any questions related to academic conflicts associated with recruitment.
Do I need a recommendation to join a fraternity?
Fraternities generally do not require any recommendations. However, if recommendations are solicited, they can be sent to the chapter house or the Greek Life Office.
What are New Member Education Programs ?
The period between the moment when a new member accepts his bid and his initiation as a full brother is known as new member education (Some fraternities use the term associate member process or pledgeship). This time period is when new members become familiar with the chapter, history and values of the fraternity. Program length varies from chapter to chapter; however, the average program is about 6 weeks. The Greek Life Office encourages all chapters to not have new member programs longer than six weeks. IFC and University policy stipulates that new member programs not last longer than 8 weeks.
How much does a fraternity cost?
The cost of fraternity dues and fees vary from chapter to chapter. Chapter dues are used to help maintain the chapter house, pay yearly insurance, for national fees and services, assist with philanthropy/community service projects, fraternity leadership schools, go toward academic scholarships, and help in defraying the costs of alumni, parent, and social events. For Fall 2015, average costs were as follows:
$1466 for first semester
$1357 per semester not living in the house, no meal plan included
$2291 per semester not living in the house, but with a meal plan included
$3280 per semester living in the house, no meal plan included
$4594 per semester living in the house, and with a meal plan included
These are average numbers. Each fraternity will have its exact costs that can be provided upon request.
How do fraternities uphold a commitment to Academics?
Each student at the University of Georgia has the primary goal of obtaining a degree and an education; therefore, the fraternity system takes seriously its role in helping its members excel academically. The scholarship committee serves as a resource to all members of the fraternity system and works to keep academic excellence a focus of the Interfraternity Council. The IFC rewards its members who excel academically by giving annual awards and scholarships to the chapters and individuals who achieve excellence in academics. Many chapters encourage scholastic achievement by maintaining incentive programs for brothers who excel in the classroom, pairing together study partners, and developing tutoring programs that are designed to fit the needs of each chapter member. During the last two decades, the fraternity system has been successful in using these and other programs to help brothers reach their full potential. This academic success can be illustrated by the average fraternity man's scholastic GPA, which has been higher than the average University man's scholastic GPA for the past 22 years. In fact, 82% of IFC men have a 3.0 GPA or higher. No matter what field of study, the Greek system will provide its members with resources and support that will help them excel in the classroom.
Do fraternities participate in community service and philanthropy ?
Philanthropy and community service are major components of fraternity life. Each year individual chapters raise thousands of dollars and compile hundreds of hours of community service. Every chapter supports a philanthropic event by holding a fundraiser annually. Fundraisers range from canned food drives to road races and golf tournaments. The Greek community is a major contributor to UGA Miracle, which benefits Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.
What sorts of leadership opportunities to fraternities offer?
The University's fraternity community is dedicated to building future leaders by providing its members with vast opportunities for leadership development. Fraternity chapters are largely self-governed and call on the talents and dedication of their members to coordinate the various aspects of fraternity life. Fraternities provide their members with numerous leadership opportunities and life experiences through their brotherhood. At the University of Georgia, fraternity men participate in almost every aspect of campus life, and they can be found in positions within numerous campus, professional, academic, and service organizations. Nationally, Greek men make up 70% of the people listed in Who's Who, 86% of the CEO's in the country's top fifty corporations, 75% of the United States Congressmen, and 85% of Supreme Court Justices since 1910. Both nationally and locally, fraternities are dedicated to teaching their members an array of leadership skills through a wide variety of leadership experiences. Through involvement in fraternal organizations, men receive many leadership and personal development opportunities that prepare them for success.
Do fraternities participate in athletics?
Intramural athletic competition is also a very exciting aspect of fraternity life, and each year fraternity men compete with and against each other in a variety of intramural sports. Flag football, basketball, softball, tennis, soccer, swimming, and ultimate frisbee are a few of the intramural sports in which fraternity men compete.
If you have any other questions or are in need of disability service, please call the Office of Greek Life at (706) 542-4612.
153 Tate Student Center
University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602
Director of Greek Life