Glossary of Terms

Active Member - A member, usually referring to an initiated member, who pays dues and actively participates in chapter activiteis.

Alumna/Alumnus Member - An initiated member of a sorority or fraternity who has graduated from college or has otherwise left the college (plurals are alumnae and alumni)

Associate Member - An individual who has accepted a bid, but has not yet been initiated into a chapter. See also "New Member".

Badge - A pin worn by members of a chapter that carries an official insignia. Badges may have different meanings (i.e. new member badge, initiated member badge)

Bid - A formal invitation to join a sorority or fraternity.

Bid Day - The last day of Panhellenic sorority formal recruitment when potential new members receive bids to join chapters and become new members. Many chapters host special bid day activities.

Big - Short for Big Brother or Big Sister. An Initiated Member who serves as a mentor for a New Member.

Chapter - The local group of an inter/national fraternity or sorority. Each chapter is referenced by a special designation or Greek letters.

College Panhellenic Association - The governing council for the ERAU-Prescott sororities. A chapter of the National Panhellenic Conference.

Continuous Open Bidding (COB) - An informal sorority recruitment process that takes place after the conclusion of formal Panhellenic recruitment or in the spring semester.

Crest - Insignia used by sorority and fraternity members. Most Greek organizations reserve the crest for initiated members only. Each crest has hidden, secret meanings behind it. Also known as a coat or arms or shield.

Depledge - The act of withdrawing from a chapter after accepting a bid, but before being initiated. Sometimes also called dropping.

Dirty Rushing - When one chapter attempts to influence a potential new member through gifts, badmouthing other chapters, etc.

Disaffiliate - The process of relinquishing membership. This term is often incorrectly used in place of disassociate.

Disassociate - The act of temporarily stepping away from chapter membership. Usually Rho Gammas and council leadership disassociate during their formal recruitment processes.

Dry - An event or chapter which does not permit alcohol.

Dues - The monetary costs of membership. These fees are used to cover the costs of operation, formal events, social activities, and other events, depending on the organization.

Expansion/Extension - The process of a inter/national organization seeking to establish a new chapter on a campus.

Formal Recruitment - A designated recruitment period where a series of events are held by chapters. The College Panhellenic Association sponsors Formal Recruitment for sororities in the beginning of the fall semester. The Inter-Fraternity Council coordinates a Formal Recruitment week for fraternities in the beginning of the fall and spring semesters.

Founders Day - A day celebrating the creation of an inter/national organization and the individuals who were founding members. Some chapters also celebrate their local Founders Day.

Inter-Fraternity Council (IFC) - The governing council for the ERAU-Prescott fraternities. A chapter of the National Inter-fraternity Conference.

Inactive Member - An initiated member who has elected to become inactive in their chapter and has no say or participation in chapter activities.

Initiated Member - A member who has gone through Initiation and is a currently enrolled undergraduate student.

Initiation - A formal ceremony that marks the transition from a new member to an initiated member. At this time New Members receive lifelong membership privileges into their organization.

Intentional Single Preference - When a woman lists only one chapter on her MRABA following Preference in sorority formal recruitment. When she lists only one Chapter, despite having visited one other Chapter during preference round, it is an intentional single preference.

Legacy - An immediate or extended family member of an Initiated Member. Each organization has their own definition of a Legacy.

Little - Short for Little Brother or Little Sister. A New Member who is being mentored by an Initiated Member of their chapter.

Membership Recruitment Acceptance Binding Agreement (MRABA) - This is a one-year binding agreement signed by a potential new member when ranking chapters after Preference in sorority formal recruitment. A PNM agrees to accept a bid from any chapter she lists on her MRABA. If a PNM receives a bid to a chapter she lists and declines it, she is bound to it for one year or until the next formal recruitment period, meaning she cannot accept a bid to any other organization. If a PNM signs an MRABA and does not receive a bid, she is eligible for continuous open bidding or snap bidding.

New Member - An individual who has accepted a bid, but has not yet been initiated into a chapter. See also "Associate Member".

Pinning - A formal ceremony that welcomes new members into the chapter and typically happens shortly after a bid is accepted. Can also be a term for a fraternity member giving his pin or a sweetheart pin to his girlfriend, often a precursor to an engagement.

Philanthropy - A designated cause that the fraternity or sorority supports. Can be national, local, or both.

Potential New Member (PNM) - An individual who is interested in becoming a member of a chapter and is eligible to do so.

Quota - The number of potential new members to which each sorority can offer bids during formal recruitment. This is determined with a formula involving the number of chapters and the number of women participating in bid matching.

Recruitment Counselor - A recruitment guide for the College Panhellenic Association who disassociates from their sorority to guide potential new members through formal recruitment and answer questions. Other campuses may refer to these folks as Rho Gammas, Rho Chis, Pi Chis, or Gamma Chis.

Ritual - The traditional rites and ceremonies of a fraternity or sorority; these are almost always private and known only to initiated members of a fraternal organization.

Snap Bidding - An option available to chapters that did not match to quota in sorority formal recruitment. Chapters may offer bids to potential new members whose preferences were not matched after preference round. Snap bids are coordinated and extended through the College Panhellenic Association prior to the distribution of bids and the start of Bid Day activities.

Social - A gathering with another group, typcially another chapter, for a fun occasion.

Sweetheart - A non-member honored by a chapter, usually because of the work they've done with a chapter.

Total - The allowable chapter size on a campus for sororities, 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.

Underground Member - An individual who participates with the chapter as a member, but is not on the chapter's official roster. Underground members are not permitted.

Underground/Unrecognized Chapter - A chapter who is not recognized by the University, but continues to operate. It is strongly recommended that students do not join underground chapters. We are unaware of any current underground chapters at ERAU Prescott.