Getting to know Greek life at Iowa State

Jill O'Brien

Fraternities and sororities have been on Iowa State’s campus since 1875 to serve those men and women in the community as an outlet for philanthropy, leadership and service.

Of Iowa State’s 30,406 students, 5,113 of them are members of the sorority and fraternity community and are involved in the four community councils: the Interfraternity Council (IFC), the Collegiate Panhellenic Council (CPC), the Multicultural Greek Council (MGC) and the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), according to community member statistics from the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Engagement.

Interested in joining one of the 65 chapters on campus or just want to learn what they’re all about? Read up on each of the four councils:

Interfraternity Council

Iowa State’s first fraternity came to campus 140 years ago and that has since grown to 32 IFC chapters.

Fraternities recruit members on an informal, year-round basis. This allows men the ability to join a chapter at any point during their college career. Men can join fraternities after Greek Visit Day, during the summer before fall semester and during the school year.

During the summer, chapters will reach out to prospective members with information about their specific chapter. When new students arrive at orientation, they will have the ability to tour fraternity houses and meet members, alumni and student leaders.

The Office of Sorority and Fraternity Engagement’s Fraternity guide is another resource that students can use if they wish to learn more about fraternity life. The Fraternity Guide can be found at

Collegiate Panhellenic Council

There are 17 CPC chapters on campus, and 681 women joined CPC last year during primary recruitment, according to their community statistics.

Primary recruitment takes place before classes begin in the fall. Potential members are able to visit all of the Panhellenic organizations and determine which sorority fits them best. Recruitment takes place over a full week, and potential members are able to move into their residence halls early and meet residents on their floor before starting recruitment. The process starts with different events and ends with the Bid Day celebration, where potential members receive membership bids from a specific chapter.

After primary recruitment is over, there are still opportunities to join a sorority. During the informal recruitment process, chapters contact potential members, or potential members contact chapters, to invite women to recruitment events to get to know them better, whether that be an event at the chapter house or simply having dinner with a potential member.

Information on both primary and informal recruitment can be found at

Multicultural Greek Council

There are nine chapters within the MGC, which is the fastest-growing Greek council on campus, according to the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Engagement website.

The Multicultural Greek Council has a membership selection process called intake, which does not happen until a member has an established GPA at Iowa State. Some chapters host a Rush Week, where potential members can decide whether they would like to pursue membership in that organization.

If the organization you’re interested in does not accept first-term freshmen or does not host Rush Week, potential members are still encouraged to meet the minimum GPA, learn more about the organization and get to know the current members.

National Pan-Hellenic Council

There are eight chapters within the National Pan-Hellenic Council, all of which are culturally based fraternal organizations. NPHC chapters also go through the intake process, similar to that of the MGC, The NPHC and MGC host an event called Meet the Greeks, a general information session where students can learn more about the chapters, ask questions and learn about the intake process.

To learn more about the recruitment process for each council, or about sorority and fraternity life at Iowa State, visit