Information for Parents and Families

Sending a student to college is an exciting time, but does come with some challenges and stresses along the journey. While at Richmond, your student will encounter many opportunities to become involved outside of their classroom experience. It is important that you, the parent or family, be educated about the experience that your student will find by being involved in a fraternity or sorority at the University of Richmond.

At Richmond, membership in a fraternity or sorority offers a sense of belonging, as well as a community of friends away from home. Additionally, research has shown that involvement in fraternities and sororities increases students' likelihood of graduating and satisfaction with the University. As life-long members of a fraternity or sorority, students are offered the opportunity to develop as leaders, serve the local community, and focus on academics, as well as their careers, by connecting with alumni members of their organizations.

While the fraternity and sorority experience can be a very positive experience, there are also some high-risk behaviors and tragedies that have occurred around the United States, associated with fraternities and sororities. At Richmond, we take issues of hazing, alcohol misuse, and sexual misconduct very seriously and work with both fraternity and sorority leaders and all chapter members to educate, hold accountable, and prevent these issues from occurring. 

Information and Resources

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  • Recognized vs Unrecognized

    The University has defined a process by which fraternities and sororities can apply to become officially recognized. With recognition comes benefits and support including access to professional staff members and University resources, access to physical space, insurance, leadership opportunities, and assistance with liability issues that may arise. If a fraternity and sorority is recognized by the University, they are also recognized by the national (or international) headquarters of that organization, which adds another layer of support of resources, insurance, access to advisors and leadership opportunities. 

    Unrecognized organizations are those that either (a) have not been formally recognized by the University, or (b) were previously recognized by the University of Richmond and lost that recognition as a result of a University and/or national organization conduct process. They are prohibited from utilizing campus resources, participating in Fraternity and Sorority Life events, wearing their organization letters, gathering on campus, and recruiting new members. They do not carry liability insurance and are not supervised by or affiliated with any national organization. Students participating in these unrecognized organizations will not be entitled to any of the benefits offered to students and alumni of recognized organizations.

    The University of Richmond does not sanction the activities of unrecognized organizations and strongly discourages students from participating in unrecognized organizations.


  • Fraternity and Sorority Housing

    The University of Richmond does not have any fraternity or sorority related housing on-campus.

    Each fraternity and sorority does have dedicated space on-campus—called lodges and cottages—for meetings, events, and building community. These are university-owned spaces that are leased to the applicable house corporation or national organization; lodges and cottages are non-residential and students may not reside or sleep in them. 

    Each fraternity and sorority must have a house manager within their executive board that serves as the liasion between the Center for Student Involvement, University Facilities, and the applicable housing corporation or national organization. Lodges and cottages are inspected weekly by CSI staff, University Facilities and the house manager.

    Questions about cottages or lodges should be directed to Karrie Kapsak, Associate Director for Student Centers and Operations. 

  • When can a student join?

    The University of Richmond has deferred recruitment for its formal recruitment to fraternities and sororities. That means that the earliest a student could join a fraternity or sorority is during their second semester. Transfer students are able to join in their first semester.

    For specifics, please review our recruitment information.

  • Learn More about National Organizations
    The University of Richmond has fraternities and sororities that are associated with the North American Interfraternity Conference, National Panhellenic Conference, and the National Pan-Hellenic Council. Each of these groups have great information to learn more about the fraternity and sorority experience.