Understanding Sorority Life at the University of Arizona

With students returning to campus this month, many first year students are experiencing life on a college campus for the first time.

With that comes a slew of new people, experiences, and challenges that make one’s time in college so memorable. This includes exploring Greek life and involvement in a fraternity or sorority for many new students.

Greek life is new to many incoming first-year students and a source of anxiety for students trying to find their way through college. To help understand the sororities’ role in campus life at the University of Arizona, here’s a rundown on some common questions we hear from U of A students.

Are sororities popular at the University of Arizona?

Yes, sororities are very popular at the University of Arizona and attract more incoming students than the fraternities on-campus. Each year around 1,100 incoming freshmen join a sorority, compared to under 500 new students who join a fraternity. University of Arizona students who join a sorority tend to be less diverse than the student body as a whole, with 73% of sorority members identifying as non-Hispanic white. Some students opt to pursue membership in a cultural sorority rather than a traditional Greek sorority.

What are the benefits of being in a sorority at the University of Arizona?

The Office of Fraternity & Sorority Programs at the University of Arizona market four significant benefits of joining a Greek organization. The first benefit is academic excellence, as many sororities have a grade point average requirement for joining and maintaining membership, thereby encouraging members to stay focused on their studies. The second benefit is leadership since students often take on additional chapter responsibilities outside of the classroom. The third benefit is service, as many chapters participate in community service events throughout the year. The final benefit is friendship, as sororities are primarily a social organization and connect students to new friends during their time at the University of Arizona.

Each year around 1,100 incoming freshmen join a sorority, compared to under 500 new students who join a fraternity.

How many sororities are there at the University of Arizona?

There are 23 sororities and women’s fraternities at the University of Arizona. These include a mix of traditional Greek sororities and cultural organizations specific to different racial, ethnic, and social groups, including African American, Latinx, LGBTQ+, and native American sororities. At the University of Arizona, the traditional Greek sororities are governed by the Panhellenic Council. The 13 sororities within the Panhellenic Council are:

  1. Alpha Chi Omega
  2. Alpha Delta Pi
  3. Alpha Epsilon Phi
  4. Alpha Phi
  5. Alpha Sigma Alpha
  6. Chi Omega
  7. Delta Gamma
  8. Gamma Phi Beta
  9. Kappa Alpha Theta
  10. Kappa Kappa Gamma
  11. Phi Sigma Rho
  12. Pi Beta Phi
  13. Sigma Kappa

The cultural sororities at the University of Arizona are governed by the United Sorority & Fraternity Council (USFC), which oversees an additional 11 organizations. The 11 sororities governed by the USFC are:

  1. Alpha Kappa Alpha
  2. Alpha Phi Gamma
  3. Alpha Pi Omega
  4. Delta Sigma Theta
  5. Gamma Alpha Omega
  6. Gamma Rho Lambda
  7. Kappa Delta Chi
  8. Lambda Theta Alpha
  9. Sigma Gamma Rho
  10. Sigma Lambda Gamma
  11. Zeta Phi Beta

The other governing council for Greek life on-campus at the University of Arizona is the Interfraternity Council (IFC), which governs most fraternities.

When does sorority rush begin at the University of Arizona?

Sorority rush, also known as recruitment, takes place during the beginning of the fall semester at the University of Arizona. The process begins with online registration with the Panhellenic Council to express interest in joining one of the governed sororities. There is an online application and a $130 registration fee to start the process. Prospective members are then asked to submit a video interview introducing themselves for potential chapters to get to know them more and as a reference ahead of the in-person events.

There are then a series of 4 rounds with social events and chapter meetings to get to know more members and submit a preference for which sorority a student would like to join. The process ends with Bid Day when sororities offer membership to a select number of potential new members. Selectivity varies by the sorority, depending on the popularity of the chapter. Note that some chapters have GPA requirements from high school and will continue to require grade point average submission during the time of active membership.

How much does it cost to join a sorority at the University of Arizona?

Students who participate in a sorority at the University of Arizona can expect to pay a couple of hundred dollars to a couple of thousand dollars per semester in dues depending on the sorority. These expenses do not include the cost of housing for those sororities with chapter houses and instead cover the cost of local and national chapter fees, social events, and any charges specific to new members.

Costs range widely between sororities, ranging from $425 for new members of Phi Sigma Rho to $5,194 for new members of Alpha Phi. The average new member fee for sororities in the Fall 2021 semester was $2,438, and the average active member fee was $1,840. Members living in a chapter house pay an average of $4,125 in additional housing expenses.

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Do sororities have their own houses at the University of Arizona?

Most sororities at the University have their own chapter house on campus, where some sorority members live and host their chapter events. All of the sororities that have homes are managed by the Panhellenic Council. Cultural sororities managed by the United Sorority & Fraternity Council do not have their own homes. The sororities that have their own chapter house at the University of Arizona are:

  1. Alpha Chi Omega
  2. Alpha Delta Pi
  3. Alpha Epsilon Phi
  4. Alpha Phi
  5. Chi Omega
  6. Delta Gamma
  7. Gamma Phi Beta
  8. Kappa Alpha Theta
  9. Kappa Kappa Gamma
  10. Pi Beta Phi
  11. Sigma Kappa

Other housing options at the University of Arizona

Many University of Arizona students live in an off-campus apartment during college, either after a year in the dorms or between years living in their Greek chapter house. There is no better option for off-campus housing for those students than Aspire Tucson.

Aspire Tucson is a 12-story highrise located within walking distance of the campus, Greek row, and University Blvd. The community offers fully-furnished studio to six-bedroom apartment homes specifically designed for University of Arizona students. The six-bedroom, two-story penthouses on the top 4 floors of the community, are especially popular among Greek students looking for an off-campus apartment to live with other members. The community is full of amenities with a fitness center, study rooms, courtyard, underground parking, and a rooftop pool and hot tub. For information about pricing and availability for the upcoming semester, contact the Aspire Tucson team today at (844) 200-7182!