Back to School: Greek life at DePauw University


DePauw University is historically known for being a greek-populated community with just under 70 percent of students affiliated with greek chapters. At DePauw, there are a total of six Panhellenic sororities (PHA), 10 fraternities recognized by the Interfraternity Council (IFC), six National Pan-Hellenic Council organizations (NPHC), three Multi-cultural Greek Council organizations (MGC) and one local sorority.

First-years do not need to stress about joining a greek organization. If you want to be part of the greek community, an opportunity will come at the beginning of second semester when the formal recruitment process rolls around. For men and women planning to participate in recruitment, there will be a guide called a Rho Gamma that will help facilitate questions, comments or concerns that may arise during the process. Men and women who plan on participating in recruitment meet the Rho Gammas in the fall semester in casual settings. 

Before Rho Gammas come on the scene, here are a few pointers about greek life. Make sure to stay off sorority and fraternity property until mid-October. A university by-law states that first-year students are not allowed on greek property right away.

Soon, first-years will be welcome to attend social events including parties and events at fraternities, as well as lunch or dinner dates at sorority and fraternity houses. Panhellenic also puts together dates to showcase each sororities throughout the semester, often referred to as Informal Chapter Events (ICE).  

Even though first-years can’t go on the greek properties immediately, they have an opportunity to meet members of the greek community outside of the house setting. An opportunity to learn about greek life includes the Backyard Bash, hosted by Campus Living and Community Development in the Dells from 7 p.m. - 9 p.m. on Saturday Aug. 30. First-years are encouraged to go to the greek chapters’ philanthropic events to support great causes and learn more about greek life off of the chapter properties.

The best piece of advice DePauw students can share with first-years is not over analyzing or stereotyping each greek chapters. Fellow peers are likely to suggest first-years go into recruitment with an open mind. This way, each chapter’s purposes and values will be more apparent.

Regardless of whether or not the decision is made to join a greek chapter, first-years are  encouraged to get to know as many greek students and alumni as they can. Don’t get stuck hanging out in one place because any fraternity or sorority will be more than happy to have first-years over once first-years can come on greek property.