Fraternities and Sororities

(Student Handbook 5.3)

All fraternities and sororities are expected to encourage the principles of Scholarship and Learning, Leadership, Service and Philanthropy, Community, and Brotherhood and Sisterhood.

Registration and Recognition of Fraternities and Sororities at Miami University (Student Handbook 5.3.A)

Fraternities and sororities shall be recognized by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the respective Greek Governing Council (Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council, Panhellenic Association, or other recognized Greek Governing Council organization).

Registration (Student Handbook 5.3.A.1)

In order to be a recognized fraternity or sorority at Miami University by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, the following registration requirements shall be met each semester of the regular academic year:

  1. A roster of current new members, active members, officers, and advisors on file.
  2. An on-campus advisor (faculty, staff, and/or graduate student) on file.
  3. Membership Activation Form (New Member Bid Acceptance, Hazing Compliance, and Grade Release) is required within 24 hours (or next business day) of acceptance of membership.
  4. Signature of compliance by the Chapter President and Chapter Advisor to the understanding of The Student Handbook (Registration and Recognition of Fraternities and Sororities, Hazing) and other University policies.
  5. Recognition by a Greek Governing Council.
  6. Current constitution/bylaws on file.
  7. Should all criteria be met, the fraternity or sorority will be fully registered and recognized by the Office of Student Activities Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and Miami University. 

Additional Requirements and Expectations (Student Handbook 5.3.A.2):

  1. All social fraternities and sororities must be affiliated/maintain a charter with an inter/national organization or have expressed written intent to affiliate within three years of formation.
  2. Each chapter will maintain at least five million dollars’ worth of general liability insurance which covers each member, advisor, alumni, board member, the University, and the national chartering organization.
  3. Scholarship and Learning: In order to promote scholarship and learning as a principle of the Miami Greek community, each chapter must maintain a 2.5 chapter grade point average each semester.  It is expected that chapters have a plan or program to foster academic excellence.
  4. Service and Philanthropy: All chapters must serve the community and world around them by planning and completing one service project per calendar year. Additionally, each chapter must plan and complete a charitable event for their official philanthropic organization or chosen charity if no official dedication exists.
  5. Functional Leadership: Chapters must complete and submit required paperwork in a timely fashion to the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life each semester. Required paperwork includes chapter officer rosters, chapter member rosters, inventory of contributions to the community and others as needed.  Each chapter president is expected to meet with his/her designated office liaison a minimum of once per semester.
  6. Non-Hazing Commitment: All chapters must be committed to a University environment that is safe, respectful, and educational. Each semester the Chapter President and Advisor must sign and submit the Certification of Compliance agreement regarding the University’s policy on hazing.  Each chapter must operate in compliance with State of Ohio, Miami University, and respective inter/national organization policies and laws regarding hazing and related activities.
  7. A Community of Rituals and Values: Every chapter is expected to promote, follow, and act upon the values contained in the rituals and founding spirit of their respective organizations.

Benefits of Recognition (Student Handbook 5.3.A.3)

All fraternities and sororities recognized by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and a Greek Governing Council will have the rights and privileges at Miami University including, but not limited to, use of rooms for chapter sponsored events, access to organization financial accounts, and recognition and advisement by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the Greek Governing Councils.

Levels of Recognition (Student Handbook 5.3.A.4)

  1. Active/Good Standing: All fraternities and sororities that have fulfilled all requirements by the specified times. Each chapter must be recognized and in good standing with and adhere to the stipulations of their respective inter/national headquarters, Miami University, the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and their respective Greek Governing Council.
  2. Probation: All fraternities and sororities that have failed to complete all requirements by the specified times.  Organizations that fall in this category shall be notified of the need to complete said requirements by an alternative date by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and/or Greek Governing Council.  All benefits of recognition will be withheld for chapters while on probationary status.

Denial or Suspension of Recognition (Student Handbook 5.3.A.5)

The Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and/or the Greek Governing Council reserves the right to deny or terminate recognition status. Circumstances that will result in denial or suspension of recognition include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Denial
    1. When the student organization has not complied with registration requirements
    2. Registering a fraternity or sorority that is under termination or sanction from its local, state, national, or international affiliate (if applicable)
    3. Registering a fraternity or sorority currently under disciplinary sanction under a new name
    4. When the fraternity or sorority has delinquent debts which the student(s) requesting registration cannot show will be paid within a reasonable time
    5. Submitting false information to Miami University or a University representative
    6. Action taken by the Greek Governing Council
    7. Action taken by the Office of Ethics and Student Conflict Resolution (OESCR)
  2. Suspension
    1. A request from the student organization to dissolve
    2. A lapse in communication with the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, including failure to maintain on file with the Office the most current copy of the organization’s constitution, bylaws, and officer contact information, including the name and contact information for the faculty/staff advisor; updating the organization file must occur within 30 days of any change to this information
    3. Failure to live up to the responsibilities previously enumerated
    4. Failure to meet financial obligations
    5. Failure to comply with the organization’s constitution
    6. Failure to comply with the rules, regulations, policies, and procedures of Miami University as determined by appropriate University representatives
    7. Submitting false information to Miami University or a University representative
    8. Action taken by the Greek Governing Council
    9. Action taken by the Office of Ethics and Student Conflict Resolution
    10. Fraternities and sororities may have their registration terminated at the request of their local, state, national, or international chartering organization. 

Establishment of a Fraternity or Sorority at Miami University (Student Handbook 5.3.B)

Student Initiated (Student Handbook 5.3.B.1)

The formation of a newly recognized fraternity or sorority by students will require a petition to be submitted to the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the respective Governing Council they would like to affiliate with.  The petition should include the following information:

  1. Name of Organization
  2. Roster of Officers (with contact information, local address, local phone, email)
  3. Roster of Advisors (with contact information, local address, local phone, email)
  4. Membership Activation Forms for all members
  5. Constitution/Bylaws that include:
    1. Organization purpose that is tied to the educational purpose of Miami University and supports the mission of the University.
    2. Statement of nondiscrimination prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex (including sexual harassment, sexual violence, sexual misconduct, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking), race, color, religion, national origin, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, military status, or veteran status.

Inter/National Headquarters, Alumni, Regional, or Graduate Chapter Initiated (Student Handbook 5.3.B.2)

The formation of a newly recognized fraternity or sorority by Inter/National Headquarters, Alumni, Regional, or Graduate Chapter will require a petition to be submitted to the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the respective Greek Governing Council they would like to affiliate with.  The petition should include the following information:

  1. Name of Organization
  2. Expansion policies and procedures including timeline and supervision
  3. Documentation of risk management policy, risk reduction education, report of recent risk management violations nationally
  4. Outline of the membership development process including length of time
  5. Documented commitment of alumni participation as an Advisor/Advisory Board
  6. History of past expansions

Greek Governing Council Initiated (Student Handbook 5.3.B.3)

The formation/expansion/extension of a newly recognized fraternity or sorority may be approved by each Greek Governing Council.  The Greek Governing Council initiating the creation of a fraternity or sorority, along with the support of the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life will notify Inter/National Headquarters and require the information as outlined in “Inter/National Headquarters, Regional, or Graduate Chapter Initiated.” 

Membership of Fraternities or Sororities at Miami University (Student Handbook 5.3.C)

All Governing Councils, fraternities, and sororities may establish standards of membership including, but not limited to, credit hour and grade point average requirements. To affiliate with a fraternity or sorority:

  1. A student must have completed, at Miami University or other accredited institution of higher education:
    1. One full-time fall or spring semester.
    2. 12 credit hours with at least a 2.5 minimum grade point average.
    3. the two part on-line education course prior to the start of recruitment.
  2. All potential members/candidates for membership must have their eligibility verified through the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life prior to the chapter extending any form of invitation to membership.
  3. Once membership has been gained to a fraternity or sorority, it is up to each chapter to determine an individual’s requirements to maintain membership.

Responsibilities of Collegiate Fraternity and Sorority Chapters (Student Handbook 5.3.D)

  1. National/international fraternities are invited by the University to charter a chapter on campus. Their local colony or chartered chapter must hold membership in the appropriate collegiate governing council.
  2. Fraternity chapters shall form and function as single sex organizations (Title IX). Beyond this, however, chapters are responsible to maintain a program of membership recruitment that is inclusive. Each chapter must adopt procedures of recruitment and established membership criteria that will encourage opportunities for mutual selection.
  3. Chapters are responsible to educate their membership to the ideals and rituals of their organizations and exhibit these ideals through individual and group behavior and programming.
  4. Chapters are responsible to strive for and maintain living environments that enhance and support academic achievement and to practice academic integrity.
  5. Chapters are responsible to respect the dignity of all persons. Therefore, chapters will not physically, mentally, psychologically or sexually abuse or haze any human being.
  6. Chapters are responsible to protect the health and safety of their membership through programming and education. Chapters that provide housing must develop emergency procedures and establish a regular schedule for fire safety, building, and health inspections. In addition, all chapters are expected to responsibly adhere to fire safety, health, and building regulations/codes as mandated by Miami University or the City of Oxford.
  7. Chapters are responsible to maintain their property and present a clean and attractive environment.
  8. Chapter members are responsible to respect their property and the property of others. Therefore, each chapter is responsible for developing policies that hold its membership accountable for the abuse and/or misuse of property.
  9. Chapters are responsible for meeting their financial obligations to their national organization, housing corporation, the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, the Greek Governing Councils, Miami University, and any entity with which it conducts business. In addition, each chapter is responsible to prepare and approve an annual budget/audit.
  10. Chapters are responsible for discouraging the use of illegal drugs and abuse of alcohol. Furthermore, they are responsible for assuring that all form(s) of alcohol use are within the policies of the Greek Governing Council, University, and the laws of the city and state.
  11. Chapters are responsible for holding their membership accountable for compliance with standards and expectations adopted by the chapter, the appropriate Greek Governing Council, its inter/national office, and the University for establishing a fair and equitable process for taking corrective/disciplinary/standard action when a member(s) is not in compliance. Additionally, all fraternities and sororities shall be responsible for the conduct of their guests in the facilities used for residential, meeting, or social purposes.
  12. Chapters will be held accountable by the Greek Governing Council and the University for upholding laws, policies, rules, regulations, and responsibilities established by the Greek Governing Council and the University. In the case of an infraction of University regulations, the existence of a Greek Governing Council Judicial Board shall not preclude consideration of the matter by the Miami University Office of Ethics and Student Conflict Resolution (OESCR). 

Responsibilities of the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life (Student Handbook 5.3.E)

  1. Serve as an advocate for the Greek Community within the University and communities that affect them.
  2. Advise the self-directed activities of the Greek Governing Councils and their standing committees of the Miami University Greek Community, including the Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Councils, Panhellenic Association, and other recognized Greek Governing Council organization.
  3. Collaborate with the Office of Ethics and Student Conflict Resolution (OESCR) to provide advisement and guidance to the Judicial Boards of the Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council, Panhellenic Association, or other recognized Greek Governing Council organization. The primary responsibility for processing disciplinary issues lies with the Office of Ethics and Student Conflict Resolution (OESCR). However, the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life reserves the right to intervene in council and chapter affairs when University policies or state/national laws have been violated by the organization.
  4. Provide advisement to major University-wide Greek programs, Greek Life Honoraries, and organizations sponsored by the Greek Governing Councils.
  5. Serve as Chapter Liaisons for individual chapters and serve as resource for advice, counsel, support, and guidance for chapter officers and members.
  6. Provide programs that enhance Miami University’s Fraternities and Sororities Core Principles: Scholarship and Learning, Service and Philanthropy, Community, Leadership, and Brotherhood and Sisterhood.
  7. Serve as University Liaison to the national fraternities whose collegiate chapters are recognized at Miami University.
  8. Responsible for recommending policy to the Greek Governing Councils and the University.
  9. Responsible for assimilating and maintaining records/data for evaluation and analysis to discover trends and enhance the advisory role of professional staff.
  10. Conduct training workshops for faculty and/or alumnae/alumni advisors that review the duties and responsibilities of an advisor as they pertain to University and Greek Community policies.
  11. Conduct regular meetings between advisors and the Greek Life staff to promote the exchange of information.
  12. Responsible for supervising the maintenance of activity records of the Interfraternity Council, National Pan-Hellenic Councils, Panhellenic Association, or other recognized Greek Governing Council organization. The records would include, but are not limited to, membership roles, scholarship reports, social registrations, programs, projects and publications, the collegiate council’s minutes and budgets, judicial board activity, etc.
  13. Provide information that is in accord with the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act of the University to those who may inquire. 

Responsibilities of the Greek Governing Councils (Student Handbook 5.3.F)

  1. Responsible for serving as the governing bodies for the Greek Community and its member chapters. The Greek Governing Councils are expected to establish and communicate policy, rules, and regulations (within established policies of the University, National Interfraternity Conference, National Panhellenic Conference, National Pan-Hellenic Council, or other national structure) that outline codes of operations and standards to its member chapters.
  2. The collegiate councils, through self-governance, are responsible for supporting and enforcing duly adopted policies, rules, and regulations that govern student behavior.
  3. The elected council leadership is responsible to be knowledgeable of their respective constitutions, bylaws, and policies, as well as University policies and the respective council guidelines.
  4. The elected council leadership is responsible to communicate council, University, and national policies, rules and regulations, and guidelines to member chapters through their collegiate council representatives. In addition, the elected council leadership, council representatives, and member chapters are expected to adhere to and abide by all policies, rules and regulations, and guidelines of operation that are within the established policies of the University, National Interfraternity Conference, National Panhellenic Conference, National Pan-Hellenic Council, or other national structure.
  5. The elected collegiate leadership is responsible to develop a working relationship with the member chapters, their representatives who serve on the councils, and peer governing councils.
  6. As empowered advocates of the Greek Community, the councils and their elected leadership are responsible to represent accomplishments and concerns of its membership as well as recommend policy affecting its constituencies to the University and community.
  7. The council leadership is responsible for developing and supporting regular lines of communication with staff in the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and other University offices and personnel as deemed appropriate.

Revised 2017

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