Sorority Lingo: Dictionary to Greek Life

Have you ever wondered about sorority lingo? The terms that are used throughout the rush and recruitment process that is. These are a few of the terms that you might want to know about — a little dictionary to Greek life.

PNM

PNM is short code for a potential new member. This person is also referred to as an interest, rush, or candidate. These are people who have a serious interest in joining the organization.

Spec

Not every sorority uses this term, but a spec is short for a special. It is someone who you take a special interest in when they are joining. A spec can be someone from the same chapter, the same sorority at a different chapter, or someone from a completely different organization. A spec may get mentored or just receive the occasional snack.

Chapter or House 

A chapter is a group of the people at a sorority house at a specific school. Sometimes it might be at a group of schools that are nearby each other. A house is pretty much the same thing.

Bid Day

One of the most exciting days for sorority members and potential new members is bid day. This is the day when bids or invitations are handed out. It’s the day when people are confirmed to become a new part of the chapter or house.

The Para Game

As you can imagine, sorority members can be a little mischievous at times. The para game is a way for members to have fun with each other. Paraphernalia, which is Greek Gear like jackets or even small trinkets that include sorority letters, is treasured. Members sometimes take each other’s para and then brag about it in jest. Eventually it is returned. 

But please only do this with someone who has a good sense of humor!

Legacy

A legacy is someone who gets into an organization because they know someone or are related to someone who is already been initiated into the organization. It is usually someone who is a close family member.

Bis Sis or Lil Sis

When someone becomes a serious candidate for membership, they are assigned a big sister. And you become their little sister. it is so that you are guided to understand how to be a good sorority sister.

Neo

Neo is a short term for a neophyte. It is someone who has just joined the organization and still doesn’t know all of the traditions. It is also someone who has a lot of opportunities, such as joining the chapter board in some capacity.

Initiation

initiation is the process of making you a fully official member of the sorority. It is a beautiful time when everyone welcomes you into the organization. It is a time for Greek gifts, sorority paraphernalia, and lots of hugs.

So that’s some sorority lingo. There are so many more terms you’ll learn over time while navigating the rush and recruitment process. This is a start.

Just know that the most important thing is for you to love and be good to your sorority sisters. Be there for your community and care for others. These are bonds that can stay strong and long for many years, decades.

Understand what others are going through and care for yourself as well.

For Greek merchandise, clothing, and home goods that you can be proud of and that will promote your organization for many years, shop at Greek Gear.