Frequently Asked Questions
What is a sorority?
Greek-letter social organizations at North American universities are commonly referred to as sororities or women’s fraternities. These organizations have thrived and multiplied into hundreds of international organizations while making a positive impact on women in post-secondary institutions. These organizations are values based, and focus on academics, leadership, service and friendship.
What will I get out of a sorority that I won’t get out of a club?
Sororities provide an opportunity for an active and rewarding university experience focused on personal betterment while developing lifelong friendships. While each chapter is filled with different individuals and thus offers a different experience, all sororities facilitate student engagement in campus or community life. There are opportunities for academic support, growth, philanthropic activities, social events, mentorship, leadership, and lifelong friendship. Nowhere else on campus will you find a club that combines all of these activities under one umbrella. In addition to personal growth opportunities, and meeting your best friends, you will also have the opportunity to interact with many alumnae, who can provide guidance and support throughout University, and offer mentorship once graduated. The experience offers a lifetime of opportunity that extends well beyond University.
How do I get involved?
Students can join a sorority by participating in Formal Recruitment, which takes place Monday September 10 to Friday September 14, 2018. There is no fee associated with signing up for recruitment.
What is recruitment?
Recruitment is the mutual selection process through which potential new members (PNMs) meet members of each sorority. Over five days, PNMs will visit all four of our chapters and have the opportunity to find out what UAlberta Sororities are all about. As the week progresses, both the chapters and the PNMs narrow down their selections. On the final day of recruitment, after a matching process, PNMs receive an invitation to join a chapter.
How can I sign up for recruitment?
Hang tight! Online registration for recruitment will be open soon!
Who can sign up for recruitment?
All undergraduate students who identify as women and are enrolled in a regularly matriculated program (no open studies) at the University of Alberta are eligible! Some chapters will have residency (full time vs part time studies) and GPA requirements, but this shouldn't deter you from signing up for recruitment!
If you are, or ever have been, an initiated member of another NPC chapter, you are ineligible to go through recruitment. Similarly, if you have declined a Formal Membership Recruitment invitation or been a new member of an NPC fraternity within the past year, you are ineligible. Please reach out if you are unsure about your eligibility.
What if I have previous commitments during recruitment?
While we try to schedule Recruitment events in the evening on school nights, we understand that some women may have class or work conflicts. If you have any previous commitments, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or your Recruitment Counselor. We will do everything possible to make sure you can still complete recruitment.
What is the time commitment?
Joining a sorority definitely helps you manage your time. There are many active members that balance part time jobs, a full course load, and Chapter commitments. Each chapter has weekly chapter meetings and other scheduled events (philanthropic, initiation) throughout the year that are generally planned in advance to promote time management. That being said, the more you put into the experience, the more you will get out of it!
Is there a cost associated with joining a sorority?
Yes. Just like a sports club or honours organization, sororities require their members to contribute membership dues in order to cover social events, food, one-time fees, things for the house, etc. Many Chapters offer payment plans for their members so that it is not all due at the beginning of the year. You will be given an in depth look at each Chapter’s finances during recruitment.
Are sororities just like the ones on TV or in movies?
Not in the least! Typically, media outlets such as TV shows and movies do not accurately portray what it’s like to be in a sorority. Instead, they tend to portray a sexist, false stereotype of sorority women, which is extremely derogatory and is something that we contradict on a daily basis.
Will I be hazed?
Absolutely not. We view hazing as one of the most dangerous and destructive practices that organizations can partake and we fundamentally reject it. In 1977, at the National Panhellenic Conference, the “No-Hazing” policy was passed unanimously, binding all chapters of NPC fraternities to a policy of respect and dignity that absolutely forbids hazing of any kind. This is not only a Panhellenic rule, but also a University rule. The repercussions for hazing are very severe and we each do our very best to avoid any situations that make any members feel uncomfortable. On the contrary, many of our Chapters on Campus participate in initiatives that focus on hazing prevention.
What about alcohol?
In accordance with the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) Alcohol Initiative, joint sorority/fraternity events held on fraternity property are alcohol-free. All sorority chapter houses are also alcohol free. Sorority members will also benefit from alcohol educational programs, along with seminars on issues such as assault, substance abuse and personal safety.
Do I have to live in the house?
The houses on our campus house between 4-12 girls, and you are welcome to be a part of this but you are not required to. It is, however, a wonderful opportunity to live close to school with a set of girls you have already built connections with. Chapter houses are located conveniently on Campus, and are often a cheaper alternative in terms of rent. An added bonus, you get to live with some of your best friends! The house is open to all members every day to have a quiet place to study, somewhere to eat lunch, or a place crash after a late study session!
Will joining a sorority affect my grades?
All sororities value academics. We are all student first and foremost, and that is very important to each Chapter. In fact, all sororities will offer support systems, programs and services with the goal of supporting their members academically. Between all of your sisters there is more than likely someone who has taken that course, had that professor, or had a similar problem. You will have constant opportunities to reach out to sisters who want to help you succeed. The Greek System supports academic achievement through the honorary society Order of Omega and many sororities have local and international scholarships. At the end of the day, though, it is up to individuals to utilize the resources offered and balance commitments in order to excel academically!
What kind of philanthropy events do sororities hold?
Each Chapter will hold one philanthropy event per semester, and each chapter has their own philanthropy to which they contribute. Most philanthropy events involve the community, so Sorority women and Fraternity men will often come out and support each others’ events and philanthropic efforts!