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Greek Speak!

During recruitment, you might hear some terms you don’t know. Our guide to Greek speak will help get you in the know.




A sorority member who has been formally initiated by a chapter.


An initiated member who is no longer an active member of a collegiate chapter.


Alumnae Panhellenic

An area organization of alumnae of National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) member sororities.



An insignia of fraternity or sorority membership worn by only by initiated members. Each sorority has its own unique badge that can be decorated in different jewels and comes in a variety of shapes and sizes.


An invitation to join a sorority or fraternity.

Bid Day

The last day of recruitment, when potential new members receive bids to join chapters and become new members. Each chapter will usually host a Bid Day activity to help the new members get to know each other and the rest of the chapter, like bowling or roller skating.





Membership unit of a fraternity or sorority.


College Panhellenic Association

A council for all of the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) sorority chapters on a campus. This council serves as the governing body for all NPC chapters on campus and organizes the recruitment process. Each chapter chooses a delegate to sit on its College Panhellenic Council.

Continuous Open Bidding (COB)

An opportunity for chapters that do not reach quota during primary recruitment to bid to total and/or quota. The continuous open bidding process is less formal, and not all chapters will participate in continuous open bidding.



Deferred Membership Recruiting

Membership recruitment week scheduled sometime after school opening or in the second semester or at the beginning of sophomore year.


Drop Out of Recruitment

To discontinue attendance at Recruitment events, the potential member should check with her College Panhellenic as to appropriate procedures.





Name that applies to all Greek-letter organizations, characterized by a ritual, pin and strong ties of friendship. Informally, women's fraternities are called sororities.



Information File

File used by all sorority groups compiled by Alumnae Panhellenic from information furnished by college-bound women interested in Recruitment.


A traditional ceremony that brings a new member into full membership of a sorority or fraternity. Once you are initiated into an NPC sorority, you are ineligible for membership in any other NPC sorority.

Intentional Single Preference

Intentional indication of only one choice at preferential signing. National Panhellenic Conference strongly advises you not to list only one choice at preference.  Instead, list at least a second preferential choice.




A daughter, sister or granddaughter of an initiated member of a sorority. Typically, different NPC member organizations have different definitions of legacies. Being a legacy does not guarantee a bid to a particular sorority. Each NPC member organization has its own policy for invitations to legacies during recruitment.


National Panhellenic Conference (NPC)

The umbrella body for 26 inter/national women’s fraternities and sororities.

New Member

A woman who has accepted a bid from a sorority but is not yet an initiated, active member of that chapter. Chapters will have a new member process during which the new members learn more about the sorority and prepare them for initiation.



Open Recruitment

A period following Formal Membership Recruitment with informal recruiting without scheduled events. This is designated by the College Panhellenic.




Meaning "all Greek", it is the organization nationally and locally to further the aims of all member groups.


Philanthropy - A national and/or local charity that a sorority sponsors, donating their time and money through service in order to promote human welfare.


Potential New Member (PNM) - Any woman with the intent to go through formal recruitment, or registered to participate in fall formal recruitment with the College Panhellenic Council.

Preference Round

The last round of primary recruitment


Preferential Bidding - A system used at the conclusion of Formal Membership Recruitment when potential members and sororities indicate choices.





System used to equalize, in general, the number of members in each campus group. It means the number of women who may be offered bids in the recruitment process by each group. The quota is set by the College Panhellenic and depends on the number of potential members and sororities on a particular campus.




Recommendation / Reference / Letter of Information / Letter of Interest

A form completed by an alumna member of a sorority recommending a potential new member for membership. Recommendations may be more important at some campuses than others.

Recruitment counselor

A sorority member who may or may not be disassociated from her sorority to serve as a recruitment guide. They are a resource for questions or concerns during primary recruitment. Each potential new member will be assigned a recruitment counselor during primary recruitment.




The period of time designated by each College Panhellenic when there is no communication between potential new members and college sorority members.

Snap Bidding

An option available to chapters that did not match to quota. Chapters may offer bids to potential new members whose preferences were not matched after preference round. Snap bids should be coordinated and extended through the College Panhellenic, prior to
the distribution of bids and the start of Bid Day activities.



The allowable chapter size on a campus, as determined by the College Panhellenic, including new and active members. Chapters that fall under total may be allowed to participate in continuous open bidding until they reach total.

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