A Parent's Guide to Greek Life

Family's Guide to Sorority Recruitment (PDF File)

Dear Parents and Families:

Sending a son or daughter to college can be a challenging and stressful time in a parent's life. While at Roanoke College, your son or daughter will encounter many opportunities to become involved outside of their classroom experience. It is important that you, the parents and family, are educated about the enriching experience that your student will find by being involved in a fraternity or sorority at Roanoke College. First year students may not participate in recruitment until the spring semester, so you have plenty of time to learn about the Roanoke College fraternity and sorority chapters!

What is fraternity or sorority involvement all about? You probably have many different ideas about what Greek Life is like, based on the media, word of mouth, or even your own experiences. Some of these ideas may not be positive, but the reality is that those are mostly extreme cases of fraternity and sorority life. What the media and rumors will not tell you is that there are many life-long benefits to membership in nationally and internationally recognized organizations. At Roanoke College, first year men may affiliate in the Spring semester with one of 5 Interfraternity Council recognized fraternities:  Kappa Alpha Order, Pi Kappa Alpha, Pi Kappa Phi, Pi Lambda Phi, or Sigma Chi.  First year women can affiliate at the same time frame with one of 3 Panhellenic Council recognized sororities: Alpha Sigma Alpha, Chi Omega, Delta Gamma, or in their sophomore year with our Pan-Hellenic chapter Delta Sigma Theta. Roanoke College does not sanction membership in any other social Greek letter organizations other than those listed above.

Involvement in these nationally recognized fraternities and sororities can provide an additional community of friends away from home. Additionally, research has indicated that involvement in fraternities and sororities increases a student's chance of graduating from college. As a life-long member of a fraternity or sorority, students are offered unique opportunities to develop as leaders, serve the local community, and focus on academics, as well as their careers, by connecting with alumni members of Greek organizations.

Try and be as supportive as you can of your son or daughter. The decision to join a fraternity or sorority is a lifelong commitment with benefits extending far beyond one's college years. Please take the following steps to ensure that you are being an active and informed supporter of your Greek student:

  • Ask your student which organization they are thinking about joining, and make sure it is one that Roanoke College recognizes on our campus
  • Find out the details of the financial obligations of the organization
  • Know the grade requirements for new and active members
  • Learn about the fraternity/sorority by visiting the chapter's website and the official website of the fraternity/sorority headquarters. Review the mission, values, and tenants of membership
  • Encourage your student to take advantage of chapter services, leadership opportunities, and scholarships
  • Know the contact information for the chapter, big brother or big sister, and fraternity/sorority headquarters
  • Stay involved with them by attending Parents' Day functions, mother/daughter teas, father/son golf outings, or attending community service projects
  • Encourage your student to get involved in other campus organizations and volunteer organizations


Your role as a parent or family member is important as your student decides whether to join a fraternity or sorority. Encourage your student to find out more information about the Roanoke College Greek community. Ask questions about the groups your student is considering, but trust that they will make the best decision for themselves. If your son or daughter joins a Greek organization, College staff and chapter advisors are available to answer your questions or concerns and to provide you with additional information if needed. If you have any further questions or concerns please feel free to call the my office at (540)375-2327.


Sincerely,
Lynsy Yoder
Assistant Director of Student Activities and Director of Greek Life