Many myths stray the focus of what fraternities really do. Beyond the myths of hazing and non-stop partying are the facts. Fraternities were founded for the sole purpose of uniting men with common values, morals, and goals.
Every school year Fraternity men give hundreds of hours of service and raise thousands of dollars to support many different worthy causes. Most chapters support both local charities and their national organization's philanthropy. VCU fraternities work with such causes and programs as: The Jimmy V Foundation for Cancer Research, Children's Miracle Network, Alternative Spring Break, and different school mentoring and tutoring programs (The Carver Promise), to name a few. It is hard to drive for very long in the Richmond area without driving on a road "adopted" by a Fraternity organization. VCU Fraternity's have made and continue to make a difference, both on and off campus, through organized service and dedicated philanthropy. Fraternities also support other organization's philanthropies such as "Kickin' for Kidney's" kickball tournament to support the National Kidney Foundation, "Denim for Diabetes" discounted designer jeans sale to support the Juvenile Diabetes Reaseach Foundation, "Spike Out Arthritis" volleyball tournament benefitting the Arthritis Foundation, and "Miss Minerva" beauty pageant supporting the Children's Miracle Network. Between 2008 and 2009, Fraternities and Sororities at Virginia Commonwealth University performed 9,496 hours of community service, participated in 221 service programs, donated over $22,000.00 and 1.48 tons of food.
Scholastic achievement and success is the primary reason for attending an undergraduate collegiate institution. Through fraternities, scholastic achievement can be strengthened and further supported. Each fraternity adopts a scholarship plan based on their individual membership which provides reinforcement and allows for a guided path to success. At VCU, the All Male Cummulative GPA is a 2.66, while the All Fraternity Cumulative GPA is a 2.79 (This accounts for MGC and NPHC organizations). Eleven of the twelve IFC Fraternities exceed the All Male Average.
The social life of fraternity men can be very rich and rewarding, with friendships made that can last a lifetime, and the development of social skills which will be useful to any adult. Fraternities provide activities which sharpen conversation techniques, conflict resolution skills, and promote poise and a sense of social grace. All of the Greek-lettered organizations at VCU advocate the legal, responsible use of alcohol by members, and both they and their national organizations, as well as the Fraternity and Sorority Life staff, work to ensure that this responsibility is taken seriously.
What are the costs associated with joining a Fraternity organization?
It is important that each student who considers joining be aware of the expenses of both initially joining a group, and maintaining membership. Each chapter is self-supporting, funded largely by membership dues and some fundraising. Costs vary depending on individual national dues, insurance premiums, social fees, and house expenses, where applicable. Most chapters will provide a payment plan for members with special needs. Your student and you are strongly encouraged to ask about membership financial obligations.
As a parent, what should I do to support my son or daughter's decision to join a Greek-lettered organization?
First of all, be supportive of that decision and encourage your student to find out as much as they can about a prospective group(s). Consult with your student as you feel comfortable about this decision, but in the end, let him or her make the choice for their membership. After that decision is made, talk with your son periodically and ask him about their Fraternity experience. Feel free to contact the Fraternity and Sorority Life staff if you would like any additional information about a particular group.
For more information, please visit : www.fraternityinfo.com and click on the "Parent's Info" link.