Parent Guide

What is a fraternity or sorority?

There are many stereotypes that exist about fraternities and sororities and why they exist. The underlying reason for their formation; however, is to bring together a group of individuals that subscribe to a set of core values and purpose.

In short, a fraternity or sorority is a group of students that have bonded over the shared values of the organization they have chosen to join.


Academics are a central focus in fraternities and sororities on campus. Each chapter sets their own GPA requirement, and schedules study hours, tutoring, and often provide incentives for academic achievement. Currently to join a Greek chapter according to the University you must have a _____ GPA.

Financial Requirements

As a member of a fraternity or sorority each new member will pay dues that go directly to services provided by the organization to enhance university life. These include workshops, housing, career help, tutoring, etc. Most organizations have a one-time new membership fee plus semester dues. Looking into what chapters provide payment plans and scholarships is a good way to make sure your student can pay for the dues.

Time Commitment

The biggest time commitment when joining fraternity and sorority life comes when joining as a new member. The new member education process takes generally 6-8 weeks with at least on new member education class a week. After this period the time commitment drops off depending on if the student decides to take leadership roles within the organization. 


Philanthropy, community service, and brotherhood/sisterhood are important values of South Dakota Mine’s fraternity and sorority life. Many members participate in the following activities during their time as a fraternity or sorority member:

  • Fundraising for charity
  • Sponsoring Blood Drives
  • Volunteering at shelters
  • Taking leadership roles on campus
  • Leading school spirit events

A Parent’s Role

Learning: Asking questions and doing research about your child’s particular fraternity or sorority can help you support them through the recruitment and new member processes. However, balancing your involvement with letting your son or daughter explore the process on their own is equally important.

Being Open: Fraternity and sorority life is not for everyone, however, keeping an open mind to your son or daughter’s wishes when joining a chapter is very important.

Financial Obligation: Making sure you talk to your child about who will handle the financial responsibility is an important step of the process.

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