Is Pledging Becoming a Thing of the Past?

Share this post
FaceBook  Twitter  

As the Greek community moves to strengthen its focus on leadership, scholarship and philanthropy, some are taking radical steps that will, they hope, change the culture of chapters from drinking clubs to ... well, something more than drinking clubs. In the case of SAE, the mission is to "protect Sigma Alpha Epsilon's future and to eliminate a class structure between our new members and our active members ... The new True Gentleman Experience will enhance the educational and leadership experience of our members and build upon their development during each year of their collegiate tenure."

This isn't the first time a national fraternity has enacted a no-pledging policy. In 1989 ZBT mandated that any recruited new member must be initiated within 72 hours of accepting a bid. According to Zeta Beat Tau's Iota Chapter website, ZBT "[does] not believe it is necessary for men pledge a fraternity. You do not pledge ZBT- you join ZBT- all brothers have equal rights and responsibilities...This does not mean you do not have to earn your membership."

Will it work?

Certainly, there are pros and cons. While it is presumed that hazing and other dangerous practices will be eliminated, will others take their place? And in the absence of pledging traditions that are part of the brotherhood-building process, how do chapters recruit new generations of brothers who are without these experiences?

Is this a good thing? We want your opinions. Log in and leave your comment

Here are a few links where you can learn more:

SAE Announcement

Sigma Alpha Epsilon: We’re Banning Pledging (NBC News)

Sigma Alpha Epsilon Bans Pledging Nationwide In Effort To Stop Hazing (Huffington Post)