Between NORTHERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY and GREEK LETTER SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS
Greek letter social fraternities and sororities are student organizations that promote high standards of scholarship, leadership, and community service for their members. They also contribute to their members' personal growth morally, socially, and intellectually. Greek letter social organizations are characterized by a tradition of adherence to their founding principles and ideals. Loyalty to one another, mutual support for the achievement of their members, and the formulation of enduring friendships are characteristic of members of these unique social units.
Greek life is an important component of student life at Northern Michigan University. The Greek system promotes the development of a wide variety of academic, leadership, personal, and social skills for its members. Greek organizations contribute to the attractiveness of the University to prospective students and alumni. Finally, Greeks traditionally have a positive impact on the campus and in the surrounding communities through their social, academic, and service achievements. Northern Michigan University recognizes these contributions and allocates staff time and resources for maintaining and strengthening Greek organizations. Because of the importance of the Greek system and because of the unique circumstances under which it operates, the following conditions which define the relationship between Northern Michigan University and Greek organizations have been developed. This Invitational Agreement explains the relationship between Greek organizations and Northern Michigan University.
Note: This document will be reviewed and appropriate revisions will be made in the winter semester of every year. It is mandatory for a representative from the Dean of Students Office, the Center for Student Enrichment Office, and each Greek Organization to be in attendance for the Invitational Agreement meeting. If a representative is not present, that group forfeits their rights to argue for/against amendment changes. Recommended revisions will be approved by the Provost.
Greek letter social sororities and fraternities seeking to establish chapters at Northern Michigan University are invited to do so. The invitation to colonize will be extended by the Dean of Students. Once a colony or chapter is established, its continuance is based on compliance with the provisions of this Invitational Agreement. Greek organizations that are not members of national fraternities and sororities must also abide by this Invitational Agreement.
This Agreement becomes effective on August 21, 2020, and shall be in effect until August 19, 2021, unless a new agreement is entered into between the parties prior to that date.
In order to be recognized as a Greek organization and be eligible for the benefits and services accorded that status, it will be necessary for a prospective fraternity or sorority to:
A. Write a petition (application available from the Greek governing council/s) to be recognized, which will have to be approved by their respective governing councils.
B. Be formally invited to campus by the Dean of Students (if a National organization), after the Dean has received a positive recommendation from Panhellenic Council or Greek Council. Prospective organizations will petition the council that they would immediately report to (Panhellenic Council or Greek Council).
C. Define the purpose of the organization in a manner that distinguishes it as a Greek organization (if it is a prospective local social fraternity or sorority).
D. Agree to abide by the terms and conditions outlined in this statement.
If the conditions set forth in this Agreement are met, the Greek Organizations will receive the following benefits from Northern Michigan University:
A. Official recognition as a student organization at Northern Michigan University: the Greek Organization will be officially recognized by Northern Michigan University as a self-governed student organization.
B. Academic Reports: Northern Michigan University’s Center for Student Enrichment will compile and provide grade point information to the Greek Organization for its members, so long as the appropriate consent forms have been completed by the Greek Organization’s members in a timely manner.
C. Additional Advising Support: Northern Michigan University will provide staff advisers to the Greek governing organizations and assist in identifying individual chapters with faculty/staff advisers, upon request. These advisers will meet with representatives from national Greek Organizations and advise them in implementing suggested improvements for their chapters on campus, upon request. They will also assist Greek Organizations in addressing campus community issues, conduct workshops on a variety of topics as requested or as needs are identified, and provide staff to consult with individual Greek Organizations by request.
IV. GOVERNANCE OF GREEK ORGANIZATIONS
Effective self-governance is critical to the growth and well-being of the Greek system and the members therein. Fraternities and sororities are expected to:
A. Participate in the appropriate Greek governing bodies active at Northern Michigan University (Greek Council and Panhellenic Council). Fraternities and sororities will ensure that Greek governing body members are in good standing as defined by their by-laws.
B. Accept and abide by their governing councils' policies.
C. Require new recruits/associates/new members to attend a risk management workshop which will include alcohol-related issues, hazing issues, dating miscommunication and violence concerns, and sexual health issues. These workshops will be provided by the Center for Student Enrichment Office twice per semester.
V. RECRUITMENT OF NEW MEMBERS
Attracting, selecting, and orienting new members are crucial activities for Greek organizations. Similarly, this process requires that Greek organizations show a sincere concern for the general well-being of their prospective new members. In order to make the recruitment process a positive experience for all concerned, it will be necessary for Greek organizations to:
A. Register each new chapter recruit/ associate/ new member with the Center for Student Enrichment within 10 days of their association (registration form available online or by hard copy).
a. Staff in the Center for Student Enrichment will send a letter to new chapter recruits/associates/new members congratulating them on their affiliation, noting the opportunities they'll have for growth, along with information on hazing/alcohol policies. Fraternities and sororities will ensure that recruits/associates/new members are providing their current mailing address.
B. Verify that all pledges/ associates meet their respective chapter minimum cumulative grade point average within 10 day of their association. (Verification will be provided by Northern Michigan University upon receipt of a grade release form and can be taken from high school transcripts or college records depending on the student’s prior semester status.)
C. Abide by all rules and regulations established by the National Interfraternity Conference (www.nicindy.org), if applicable, or the National Panhellenic Conference (www.npcwomen.org) (,regardless of affiliation with these national organizations), if the organization is not affiliated with any other national organization, pertaining to the recruitment/pledging process, including those which govern the use of alcohol and those which prohibit hazing.
D. Enforce that all new members and prospective new members attend a risk management seminar hosted by Northern Michigan University’s Center for Student Enrichment.
E. Greek Organizations will not be allowed to start new member education for a new recruit after March 31st of the winter semester and October 31st of the fall semester.
VI. RESPONSIBLE USE OF ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES
Greek organizations are in a very vulnerable position concerning misuse and accompanying liability associated with the consumption of alcohol. Conversely, Greeks also have significant opportunities to promote the responsible use of alcohol and to encourage alternative activities. Greek organizations will be expected to:
A. Abide by all institutional, state and local policies regarding the possession, consumption, sale, and distribution of alcoholic beverages on their premises or at any entertainment or function given in the name of or for the benefit of the fraternity or sorority.
B. Require new recruits/associates/new members to attend a risk management workshop which will include alcohol-related issues and hazing issues. (These workshops will be provided by the Center for Student Enrichment twice per semester.)
a. Sororities and Fraternities: failure to complete this requirement will result in the postponement or withdrawal of initiation for new recruits who are not verified by the Center for Student Enrichment as attending a risk management workshop. Sororities who report directly to the Panhellenic Council will face judiciary issues with the council.
b. A letter will be sent to new recruits who do not meet the requirement informing them that they are not recognized as a member of a fraternity at Northern Michigan University and cannot pay dues or participate as an active member. Area advisers and presidents will be copied.
*Call upon the Center for Student Enrichment if additional assistance or workshops are needed. *
VII. ACCEPTABLE CONDUCT
The conduct of Greek members reflects on the individual, their chapters, and the Greek system as a whole. Acting responsibly requires a commitment from each Greek organization and each member of a chapter.
A. To ensure that Greeks conduct themselves in a manner that is beneficial to themselves, Northern Michigan University, and the surrounding community, they will be expected to:
a. Abide by all national, state, and local laws and regulations.
b. Abide by the regulations contained in the Northern Michigan University Student Code and the Northern Michigan University Ordinances.
c. Abide by the guidelines and regulations of their associated conference (National Interfraternity Conference, National Panhellenic Conference, etc.), the Greek governing council/s, and the terms and conditions of this statement.
d. Absolutely refrain from hazing. (Hazing is defined in section 2.3.17 in the Student Code.)
B. Individual members of Greek organizations who are in violation of any University statutes, rules, or regulations will be subject to the process and penalties outlined in the Student Code.
C. Greek organizations whose members are in violation of University statutes, rules, or regulations or who fail to abide by the guidelines and regulations of their organization’s associated conference or the terms and conditions of the Greek Invitational Agreement, regardless of whether the individuals are identified, will be subject to the process and penalties of their respective judicial processes.
D. Greek organizations whose members are in violation of University rules or regulations may be subjected to one or more penalties implemented by the Dean of Students. Penalties include but are not restricted to:
1) Probation. Probation is a period during which additional incidents of unacceptable behavior are given more severe penalties than they would otherwise.
2) Special Conditions. Special conditions prescribe a certain course of activity or behavior that must occur. Special conditions can be sanctions in and of themselves or they can be developed in conjunction with other sanctions.
3) Loss of Privileges. Privileges granted to Greek organizations and/or student organizations are suspended for an indefinite period of time that will be determined by the severity of an offense and the conditions surrounding it.
4) Suspension of Activities. A chapter is prohibited from sponsoring or participating in activities, This penalty is invoked when violations are particularly serious including but not limited to hazing or underage alcohol violations, or violations of a repeated nature.
5) Removal of a Chapter. A chapter is disbanded and must cease operations. This penalty is applied when probation is violated and when the violations are severe, of a repeated nature, or constitute a threat to the well-being of members of the University community. Appeals for leniency on decisions made by the Dean of Students can be made to the Provost.
VIII. MAINTAINING GOOD STANDING
Good standing must be maintained in order for Greek organizations to participate in recruitment, other Greek-sponsored activities, and be recognized by Northern Michigan University. Greek organizations are able to maintain this status by:
A. Registering annually as a student organization by the fourth week of the fall semester.
B. Participating in the appropriate Greek governing bodies.
C. Submitting a roster of active members for the previous semester by the end of the fourth week of both fall and winter semesters.
D. Verify a prospective recruit/associate/new member meets your organization’s GPA requirement within 10 days of affiliation with the Center for Student Enrichment by submitting a grade release form.
E. Registering each new chapter recruit/associate/new member within 10 days of his/her/their signing a bid.
F. Requiring new chapter recruits/ associates/ new members sign the commitment form approved by the CSE confirming their understanding of the financial and time commitments to this organization. Greek organizations must turn in the new member rosters and the commitment forms to the Center for Student Enrichment Office within 14 days of their bid signing.
G. abiding by the terms and conditions outlined in the Invitational Agreement.
If the Greek Organization violates the terms of this Agreement or the Student Code, the Greek Organization or the Greek Organization’s individual members may be subject to disciplinary action under the University’s disciplinary processes, and such violation could also result in the loss of some or all of the benefits provided by the University pursuant to this Agreement, including a loss of official recognition by the University.
Greek organizations must abide by the terms in the Invitational Agreement in order to be in good standing with Northern Michigan University. Good standing is defined as being allowed to recruit, initiate, attend Greek-related events, reserve rooms, be listed as an official Northern Michigan University student organization, and participate in Northern Michigan University affiliated events such as Fall Fest, Snow Fest, etc.
Revised by review committee April 2020