Greek Letter Organizations

Greek Letter Organizations have been a part of Brown's campus life for 175 years.  With both local and national organization affiliations, the current organizations include sororities, fraternities and co-ed societies.

Our active national chapters are affiliated with the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), National PanHellenic Conference (NPC), and the North-American Interfraternity Conference (NIC).

Recognition, responsibilities and privileges

Greek Letter Organizations obtain departmental group status (group recognition) through the Office of Residential Life or the Brown Center for Students of Color (BCSC).

Multicultural Greek Organizations are organizations affiliated with the National Pan-Hellenic Council, Inc. (NPHC) or the National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations (NALFO). They are not residentially based. Some chapters welcome members from multiple colleges and universities within the Providence regional area and are called "city-wide" or “regional” chapters.

Multicultural Greek Organizations receive departmental group recognition through working with the Brown Center for Students of Color (BCSC). The recognition process, guidelines and privileges are outlined to assist chapters with obtaining and maintaining privileges to recruit and host meetings and events at Brown.

Residential Greek Organization recognition, responsibilities and privileges fall under the policies and guidelines of Residential Life and Residential Council.

Residentially based Greek Letter Organizations are either local organizations or affiliated with the National PanHellenic Conference (NPC) and the North-American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) and obtain campus recognition through the Office of Residential Life for departmental group status. 

The Office of Residential Life works closely with the Residential Council and Brown Greek Council to review petitions for campus recognition.  Additional information is available on the Residential Council website.

Responsibilities of All Greek Letter Organizations

1. Each Greek Letter Organization must exist within the confines of all University policy: The stated purpose and the group's activities must be consistent with the tenets of community behavior (relevant policies are available on the SAO and Office of Student Life websites). 

2. All Greek Letter Organizations on campus must be affiliated with a student council that serves to provide governance and advocacy for the Greek Community.  Continued good standing in one of these Councils is a strict requirement in order to remain a recognized chapter on campus.  Each of these Councils shall maintain recognition from UCS.  Residential Greek chapters must be affiliated with the Brown Greek Council.  When there is more than one National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) chapter recognized on campus, chapters must be a member of the NPHC of Brown University and the NPHC must be maintained and recognized by UCS.  When more than one National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations (NALFO) chapter is recognized on campus, then the chapters must be affiliated with El Concilio, formerly Brown’s Council of the NALFO Organizations, which must be maintained and recognized by UCS.

3. A primary contact or designate delegate must attend monthly meetings of the respective Greek governing council.  These councils must meet three times per semester during the academic year. They shall serve as liaisons to the University and networks of mutual support, collaboration, and advocacy.   Chapters must meet the standards of their Greek governing council at all times.

4. Each Greek chapter must have a designated Faculty/Staff Chapter Advisor who will support the chapter by serving as a source of continuity from year to year, advising the student leaders, and acting as a liaison between the University and the chapter.

5. Each Greek chapter must submit its full current membership, advisor, and leadership information at the beginning of each semester to the respective office that provides recognition to the chapter.  For NPHC or NALFO chapters, this information must be submitted to the Brown Center for Students of Color (BCSC).  For NIC affiliated chapters, NPC affiliated chapters and local Greek letter residential chapters, the information must be submitted to the Office of Residential Life.  Membership information must include certification that the individuals are officially members according to the national organization, certification that they are current students in good academic standing with their home institution, and provide current contact information (e-mail, phone, campus and home address).  Any subsequent changes to this information must be filed within one week of the changes.

6. All members of the organization must be a matriculated student in “good standing” with their respective University.  Members that are placed on “academic warning” have one semester to work with their University to be in “good standing”.  After a semester has passed, if a member remains on “academic warning,” the member should not hold an executive board or social chair leadership position within or councils the organization as the time required for these leadership roles truly must be devoted to academic achievement.  Each member must also meet the standards set forward by their National Organization or local Greek letter organization to remain in good standing with the Chapter’s National Organization.

7. Must submit a calendar of activities for review by, both, the Greek advisor designated by the department providing recognition and the elected leader assigned to coordinating event dates for the chapters respective Greek governing council for each semester by the conclusion of the previous semester (for the fall, this calendar is due by July 31 of the previous summer).

8. Must provide proof of insurance by national organization.  If not meeting the criteria of national organization to be an active chapter (and thereby not being covered by national insurance) must obtain event insurance for each activity held.  This requirement may be waived for educational and promotional activities by petitioning the group's Greek Advisor.

9. Chapter Presidents or designee must attend any meetings held for the Presidents that are scheduled by the department providing recognition – either the Brown Center for Students of Color or the Office of Residential Life.

10. Prompt response to requests for information by the Brown Center for Students of Color, the Residential Life Office and/or the Student Activities Office.

11. Minimum of one meeting per semester for the Social Chairs and newly elected Presidents with the Greek advisor of the department providing recognition.

12. Hazing will not be tolerated.  Any violation of the State of Rhode Island law regarding hazing is a criminal offense and may be subject to arrest and prosecution any student(s) involved with the alleged hazing. The University may also exercise disciplinary jurisdiction over such offenses. In the event of University disciplinary action, individual students and/or student organizations may be subject to action.  Hazing, as defined by the State of Rhode Island law, shall mean any conduct or method of initiation into any student organization, whether on public or private property, which willfully or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of any student or other person. Such conduct shall include, but not be limited to, whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics, exposure to the weather, forced consumption of any food, liquor, beverage, drug, or other substance, or any brutal treatment or forced physical activity which is likely to adversely affect the physical health or safety of the student or any other person, or which subjects the student or other to extreme mental stress, including extended deprivation of sleep or rest or extended isolation.

13. All Greek governing councils are strongly encouraged to develop and implement a Standards Board to hold members accountable to the entire Greek-lettered community, as well as to the student code of conduct at the institution.  The council shall implement a review process that aligns with the values of the University for a fair hearing and review process.  The council shall review outcomes of review hearings with the Greek advisor of the department providing recognition. prior to issuing the sanctions to obtain the advisor’s approval and support.