Unsure that you want your son to be in a fraternity?

We don't blame you - there is a lot of bad hype about fraternities and, unfortunately, much of that bad reputation has been earned by irresponsible and selfish chapters.

In order to assure you that membership in Sigma Chi will have a positive impact on your son's life, we've addressed a few common concerns:

  1. I don't want my son to be hazed.
    • We do not haze. Hazing relies on a psychological ploy called cognitive dissonance in effort to create shared tribulations among pledges. However, research tells us that cognitive dissonance has only temporary effects - it does not create lasting bonds. Instead, Sigma Chi relies on a shared belief in the value of certain ideals (see Jordan Standard, Sigma Chi Creed, and Spirit of Sigma Chi) to form the root of our brotherhood.
    • Hazing directly conflicts with the values we espouse and with the Code of Conduct expect of all our members.
    • "Character development" is NOT code for hazing. It means team-building exercises like ropes course, assuming leadership roles, reading case studies about men of good morals, and organizing philanthropic events such as Derby Days.
    • Hazing is illegal in every state.
    • Sigma Chi International, Western Illinois University, and the Iota Omicron chapter of Sigma Chi at WIU all specifically prohibit hazing.
    • If you or your son encounter hazing, please report it to WIU's office for Fraternity and Sorority Life at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 309.298.3232
  2. I don't think we can afford it.
    • See our Dues & Rent page for details about Sigma Chi expenses.
    • Brothers in Sigma Chi have only 2 membership expenses:
      • Membership dues, which cover insurance and other operating expenses.
        • Active member dues are $435/semester; pledge dues are $500 (pledging only lasts one semester).
        • Our chapter offers discounts for members that live in our House and/or achieve a GPA of 3.25 or higher.
      • Rent. This only applies to members that live in the chapter house.
        • It is the cheapest rent on campus. A member that is paying both rent and dues to us will still save just under $1000 per semester compared to living in university housing.
      • Payment plans are available to those who request them, however, these plans spread out the cost of dues over 3-4 months, they do not reduce the total amount due (this usually applies to members who pay their own membership dues via a part-time job).
      • The Iota Omicron chapter of Sigma Chi at WIU offers a scholarship to 1-2 members each year, which will pay the full cost of tuition for one semester or half the cost of tuition for 2 semesters.
      • Sigma Chi International offers several scholarships to both undergraduates and graduate students.
      • Our local chapter is sponsored by the Sampson Leadership Fund, through the WIU Foundation and generous donations from our alumni, which may pay attendance expenses for additional leadership opportunities for your son, such as WIU's Fall Leadership Conference, Sigma Chi's Grand Chapter, and Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values conferences.
  3. I don't want my son's schooling to suffer.
    • We couldn't agree more. Your son's schooling should be his first priority and he will never be expected or encouraged to skip class or studies for a Sigma Chi event.
    • Our chapter requires a minimum 2.5 GPA for membership and builds our polices and incentives around the goal of raising individual GPA.
    • In addition to financial and recognition-based incentives, our chapter hosts study groups, prohibits fraternity events for a week before and during finals, and requires struggling members to spend certain numbers of hours in the library or with a tutor each week.
    • The All-Fraternity GPA consistently outperforms the All-Men's GPA across North America and at Western Illinois University (data from North American Interfraternity Conference and WIU).
    • Fraternity men are more likely to graduate, and graduate on-time, than non-member students (data from Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics).
    • Fraternity men are more likely to pursue a graduate degree than non-member students (data from Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics).
  4. I don't want my son to get hurt drinking.
    • We do not require, or expect, members to drink. Our purpose is the cultivation and maintenance of friendship, justice, and learning within our members. No where in there is "partying" listed. We work to impress on our members than any social functions are a celebration of our brotherhood; not the objective thereof.
    • We do host parties and similar social functions, as most college students do, but attendance is optional and such activities are strictly regulated.
      • All functions involving alcohol are supervised by at least 6 sober monitors (the number of monitors increases with the number of people in attendance).
      • Hard alcohol, liquor, and wine are prohibited at all of our functions.
      • Common-source alcohol, such as kegs, and glass bottles are prohibited at all our functions.
      • Non-alcoholic beverages and food are provided at all of our parties.
      • All of our parties and social functions are registered with the university and subject to both WIU's and Sigma Chi International's social policies.
  5. I want my son to focus on his career goals.
    • With more than 350,000 members and 152 alumni chapters across the US and Canada, Sigma Chi provides tremendous networking opportunities.
    • Half of top 10 Fortune-500 CEOs are fraternity men, and one quarter of all 500 CEOs are members of a fraternity or sorority. 9 of these are Sigma Chi's (data from North American Interfraternity Conference and Forbes).
    • Forbes named Sigma Chi a Top 5 fraternity for future CEOs.
    • Just under half of the current US Congress are members of a fraternity. Sigma Chi has 11 men in the House and 6 in the Senate. 44% of all US Presidents and 31% of all Supreme Court Justices have been fraternity men (data from North American Interfraternity Conference).
    • Greek organization members are more likely to participate in student government, perform volunteer work, and begin their careers immediately following graduation (data from Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics).
    • Fraternity members are more often involved and enthused about their workplace than non-members (data via Gallup Research)
    • Sigma Chi hosts events, social media groups, and professional-networking organizations specifically aimed at furthering the careers of our members.
    • This article was written by a Sigma Chi who was interning in web design for a company owned by another Sigma Chi.
  6. I don't want my son to become the "frat" stereotype.
    • Sigma Chi places special emphasis on diversity. As the Spirit of Sigma Chi outlines, we believe friendship among members, sharing a common belief in an ideal and possessing different temperaments, talents and convictions, is superior to friendship among members having the same temperaments, talents, and convictions and that makes us a stronger organization than one in which each member is a clone of the other.
    • Fraternity members are more likely to volunteer in their communities and worked 3.8 million service hours last year (data from Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics and North American Interfraternity Conference).
    • The University Learning Outcomes Assessment project found that fraternity members score higher than non-members in all 7 areas of student growth, learning, and development which they measure in collegiate programs.
    • Research shows that fraternity men experience better quality of life (social, physical, financial) during their post-graduate life than non-member graduates (data via Gallup Research).
    • Research shows that fraternity men are far more involved in civics and take far more leadership roles than non-members (data from UniLOA).
    • Fraternity men exhibit better critical thinking and communication skills than non-members (data from UniLOA).
    • Fraternity members report healthier relationships with their friends, families, and coworkers than non-members (data from UniLOA).
    • Sigma Chi endeavors to be the preeminent collegiate leadership development organization. As such, the bulk of our programming is aimed at teaching your son values-based leadership. We gain nothing from members that value beer-bongs over books, and our efforts reflect that.

"A fraternity should be a place you're not afraid to bring your mother."

-Dr. Charles C. Gilbert, Sigma Chi alumnus