Speak Greek


Greek letters are an important part of everyday life on South’s campus. Everywhere you look, you can see these symbols – on jerseys, t-shirts, hats, even as bumper stickers. Regardless of their combination, these Greek letters spell friendship, scholarship, leadership, and service. The Greek alphabet has a special meaning for Sorority and Fraternity members. As you learn more about the Greek system at South Alabama, these letters will come to mean a lot to you too!

Active – An undergraduate fraternity or sorority member who has been initiated by their chapter.
Alum – A fraternity or sorority member who is no longer a member of a collegiate chapter.
Bid – An invitation to join a Sorority or Fraternity.
Chapter – A membership unit of a national or international Sorority or Fraternity.
Formal Membership Recruitment – A designated membership recruitment period during which a series of organized events are held by each organization.
Fraternity – Greek letter sisterhood or brotherhood.
Greeks – Sorority or Fraternity members.
Hazing – Any act that endangers the physical, mental or emotional well-being of a new member and/or member; any act that requests, encourages or suggests violation of city, province or federal law. All Greek organizations have anti-hazing policies, as well as abide by the state laws of Alabama.
Initiation – A formal ceremony during which new members receive life-long membership privileges.
Interfraternity Council (IFC) – The IFC is the men’s counterpart to the College Panhellenic Council. Its membership is comprised of fraternities belonging to the (NIC) North American Interfraternity Conference.
Legacy – A person whose father, mother, sister or brother (and in some cases grandmother, grandfather, uncle, aunt or cousin) is an alum or active member of an organization.
Membership Intake – The recruitment process used by NPHC fraternities and sororities.
National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) – A Conference body, comprised of 26 national women’s fraternities, each of which is autonomous as a social, Greek letter society of college women, undergraduates and alumnae.
National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) – The NPHC is comprised of nine historically African-American fraternities and sororities.
New Member – A woman or man who has accepted a bid, but is not yet an initiated member.
Panhellenic Council – The College Panhellenic Council is a cooperative campus organization of collegiate members of NPC sororities.
Philanthropy – Community service or fundraising effort to promote human welfare.
Potential New Member – Any person interested in becoming a fraternity or sorority member who is matriculated and eligible to join according to the Council’s requirements.
Recruitment Counselor – A Panhellenic or IFC representative who has no contact with her or his own chapter during formal membership recruitment and is available to guide women through the recruitment process and answer questions.
Recruitment – An organized activity to meet potential members.
Sorority – Greek letter sisterhood.