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As a university student, you are here to get a degree and contribute to the scholarship of our university. This value is core to the identity of John Carroll University. The experiences and opportunities you get involved with as a member of FSL contribute to your academic scholarship and personal development. Whether the event is social, philanthropic, or academic, it is designed to positively contribute to your overall learning experience at the university.

Service and Philanthropy

As a member of the FSL community, you are deeply committed to ongoing and regular service as individuals as well as organizations, serving those most in need in Northeast Ohio. You also are part of amazing philanthropic endeavors that raise thousands of dollars for charitable organizations each year. These often involve organizations working together or competing to contribute significantly to the communities around us.

Brotherhood and Sisterhood

The connections you form during your time in FSL have the potential to last a lifetime. The bonds and friendships you create are based on the shared values of your organization and community. These relationships provide you with support to be involved, challenged, and engaged throughout your college experience. Your commitment to each other includes holding each other accountable to your values so you can be a person of integrity.


The FSL community is focused on being leaders on campus and in your organizations. As a member, you’ll have a variety of leadership opportunities in and beyond FSL, as well as the chance to develop leadership skills you can apply in a variety of other ways. The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life offers a variety of programs and opportunities to help you grow as a leader and through your engagement in the JCU community.


The fraternity and sorority community at John Carroll University began with the establishment of Alpha Sigma Nu, the national Jesuit honor fraternity in 1939. From 1939 to the 1980’s, several local sororities and fraternities were established and provided undergraduate students with social, weekend, service, philanthropic, and entertainment activities. In 2001, President Rev. Edward Glynn, S.J. approved a recommendation to transition the all-local system to a community of solely inter/national fraternities and sororities. Four local fraternities and five local sororities successfully affiliated with inter/national organizations in September 2001.

JCU’s inter/national fraternity and sorority community has experienced success and challenges since its’ installation in the fall of 2001. Members have higher GPAs than ever before and are establishing themselves as outstanding citizens through high rates of community service and philanthropic endeavors. The fraternity and sorority community is proud of its' accomplishments and is committed to setting the standard for the ideal John Carroll graduate.


Sutowski Hall

Some of the sororities have their own floor in Sutowski Hall. Each organization has their own residential requirements for members. Chapter requirements for living on the floor will be discussed during sorority recruitment.

Membership for a Lifetime

Throughout the college experience at John Carroll University, the friendships that our members make within their chapters and in the fraternity and sorority community last a lifetime. Whether you come to college not knowing a single person or you come with friends, the opportunity to be a part of a national fraternity or sorority can transcend your JCU college experience. You will gain a “home away from home” and be involved in a wide range of brotherhood and sisterhood activities.


The cost of membership varies from chapter to chapter. Generally members are responsible for the following costs:

• One-time initiation fee
• Dues (fall and spring semesters) and a one-time initiation fee to the national organization. After your first semester is over, you will pay semester dues in fall and spring. Membership dues cover all the activities, events, leadership development training required by all inter/national sororities and fraternities.
• Membership in a fraternity or sorority is a financial commitment that we encourage you to consider prior to accepting a membership invitation.


Fraternities and sororities are values-based organizations focused on four main areas: leadership, scholarship, service and brotherhood/sisterhood. Membership in a fraternity or sorority offers many opportunities for involvement, such as leadership positions and development, academic support, community service and regional/national leadership conferences. Additionally, fraternity and sorority members have access to high-quality, educational and leadership development programs and lots of fun social activities like date parties and formals!

The cost of membership varies from chapter to chapter. Generally members are responsible for the following costs:

  • Dues to local and inter/national organizations
  • Initiation fee
  • Housing costs (Residence Life costs)
  • Alumni dues (post-graduation)

Membership in a fraternity or sorority is a financial commitment that we encourage you to explore before seeking membership.

Membership in a fraternity or sorority is a lifelong commitment. While the fraternal experience is often focused on the collegiate years, alumni members are essential to our organizations. Often alumni continue to stay involved through advising or volunteering for their chapters.

Hazing activities are illegal in the state of Ohio and violate the following policies:

  • John Carroll University Community Standards
  • Interfraternity Council Bylaws
  • Panhellenic Council Bylaws
  • Inter/National Fraternity and Sorority Governing Documents

If a chapter and/or individual members violate the anti-hazing policies listed above, legal action can be taken against the chapter and its members. Hazing is not tolerated at John Carroll University.

Sutowski Hall is home to several of the FSL organizations. Each chapter has their own residential requirements.

The Office of Residence Life allows first-year residential students who join a fraternity or sorority in the fall semester to move onto their organization’s floor in the spring. If you are interested in joining a fraternity or sorority and then moving onto your organization’s on-campus floor, please contact the chapter directly.

Live-in requirements vary from chapter to chapter.

There are several benefits that come from living on a fraternity or sorority residential floor. Living on a fraternity or sorority floor provides members with the opportunity to learn important leadership and facility management skills. Members who live in also tend to have higher GPAs than those who do not.

Chapter floor tours will be offered during the recruitment process.

We encourage parents to become involved with their student's fraternity or sorority experience. There are numerous ways parents can become involved, including attendance at Parents' Weekends and award banquets. Many chapters also have parents' clubs in Northeast Ohio and other large cities throughout the US. These clubs are a great way to meet and network with other parents.

Sorority Recruitment:  Frequently Asked Questions

One of the best ways to help your student succeed in recruitment is to continually encourage her to learn about all of our sorority chapters. Each of our five chapters are unique and offer their own rich traditions. It is important to enter the recruitment process with an open mind, as opposed to having preconceived ideas as to which sorority is right for your student. It is important for your student to make her own decision with as little influence from others as possible.

Current sorority women should not be trying to form friendships with your student the summer before Recruitment begins. With that being said, women who already know your student should not be contacting her to talk about Recruitment, nor should your student receive any communications or gifts from sorority women, alumnae, or members’ mother.

Recruitment is different over time and between institutions. Please do not assume that the Recruitment process at the John Carroll University will be identical to the one that you remember. Many times friends can provide inaccurate information to parents and potential new members as well. We recognize that you and your student are both nervous and excited for Recruitment, so if you do have questions, the best place to direct those questions is the Office of Fraternity and Sorority staff. We ask that you review the materials that we have compiled for you on this website, and if you still need questions answered, then please contact us and we will be happy to answer those.

Additionally, if you hear information from a friend that conflicts with the website materials, go with the website, as we are the ones most closely linked to the Recruitment process. Please also keep in mind that this is Recruitment not Rush. Your student will be nervous about this process, but please encourage her to understand that chapters are equally as nervous to impress her and recruit her into their sorority’s membership.

As your student goes throughout the Recruitment process it will be her duty to share with you the experiences that she has. If you do call the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, we will be able to share with you very limited information. If you have questions about why she may have been released from a chapter or which chapters have asked her back for the day, we cannot share that information with you. In fact, chapters do not inform us of how they make their selections, or what their process looks like.

Not at all! Sorority life has many wonderful opportunities to offer to all college women. There is no reason for you to miss out on the experience because you are not a freshman. All undergraduate college women are encouraged to participate in Recruitment, regardless of their year in college. Panhellenic offers everyone the opportunity to experience the many benefits of sorority life.

You are under no obligation to join a sorority just because you register for Recruitment. Your student is encouraged to participate in Recruitment, because it is an excellent opportunity for her to learn about sorority life, meet new friends, and explore opportunities to get involved!

Although most women participating in Recruitment are invited to join a chapter, there are no guarantees that your student will receive a bid. Fortunately, very few women participating in Recruitment are released from the process, meaning they are not invited back to any chapters. Overall, the majority of women participating receive bids to join sororities at the end of the process.

Each member of a sorority is held to a certain financial obligation. Although each organization has a variety of options to fulfill the financial obligation, there is not an abundance of consistent financial assistance programs for women. Financial assistance programs are reserved for women who have run into an emergency situation and need aid to continue their membership, while working through the present situation.

First-year students who become a new member during their first semester at JCU, are allowed to move to the organization’s on-campus residential floor in the spring semester.

Fraternity and Sorority Terms

Active: An initiated collegiate member who is currently paying dues to a fraternity or sorority

Bid: An invitation to join a Greek organization

Big Brother or Big Sister: An active member who serves as a mentor to a New Member during their New Member Program

Brother: A form of address when one initiated member refers to another member in a fraternity

Chapter: The local group of undergraduate students on a particular campus recognized by the university and the national organization.

Primary Recruitment: A designated membership recruitment period during which each sorority or fraternity holds a series of organized events. It is a mutual selection process.

Fraternity: 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. Although the full name of a sorority may include either sorority or fraternity, informally all women's fraternities are called sororities.

Recruitment Counselor: A member from a sorority chosen and trained to assist during Primary Recruitment events and to advise potential new members throughout the process.

Greeks: Fraternity and sorority members

Interfraternity Council (IFC): The governing body of the fraternity system.

Initiation: A ritual-based (non-hazing) ceremony that marks the acceptance of a lifetime commitment to a Greek organization.

International/National Headquarters: The central organization of a particular fraternity or sorority.

Legacy: Someone whose grandparent, parent or sibling is a member of a particular Greek letter organization. Being a legacy does not guarantee membership. Each organization has specific information on what relatives they allow for potential new members to be considered a legacy. Please speak with each chapter for details during recruitment.

Panhellenic Council (PHC): The governing body of all sororities on campus.

New Member: A new member of a fraternity or sorority aspiring to become an initiated member.

Philanthropy: A charitable project supported by a fraternity or sorority.

Potential New Member: A non-member who is eligible to participate in the recruitment process, visiting fraternities or sororities with an interest in possibly affiliating with one organization.

Quota: System used to equalize 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 Panhellenic Council and depends on the number of potential new members and sororities on a particular campus.