Pledged - Dues

Pledged: The Secret Life of Sororites describes sororities as elitist organizations that only daughters from wealthy families can truly afford to be a part of. Others try but are unable to gather the same experiences. In truth, however, there are many different experiences that women face when paying for dues, and every chapter I've had contact with takes these experiences into consideration.

However, every Greek organization has financial responsibility as a characteristic they require. The chapter will work with you to come up with payment plans, scholarships, etc. to help you pay for dues. However, they tell you up front how much the dues cost per semester or year, and it is your responsibility to make sure you can pay them.

Different schools and different chapters also have different costs. In addition, different chapters include different things in their dues.

My chapter's dues were between $300-$400 / semester. These dues helped us maintain a budget for recruitment and sisterhood events, pay our national membership dues, pay our Panhellenic dues, have a safety net in case anything broke in the house, etc. They were in the average for dues on campus. 

Other chapters on my campus had dues between $900-$1000 / semester. However, their dues included much more. They had chefs that came and made them at least one meal a day (usually more, though depending on the amount you ate in the house you sometimes paid a meal plan cost as well). Their recruitment costs, housing costs (rent was separate), national membership dues, Panhellenic dues, and social events like date night and formal were all included in their dues. They were the most expensive chapters on campus.

At my best friend's campus, dues were much cheaper all around. On her campus, sororities were not allowed to have houses because that many women living together was still considered a brothel. Therefore, all housing costs were removed from their dues. They paid only $100-$200 / semester which covered their national membership dues, Panhellenic dues, and maybe even gave them a little bit of a budget left over. Their campus was much smaller than mine, and their event costs were different than at my school.

In short, all chapters and all schools have different costs of attendance. Most, if not all, sororities will try to come up with a plan to help you pay your dues (many even offer scholarships from their national organizations). Many sororities have payment plan options (my sorority allowed us to pay in three installments throughout the course of the semester. If you still needed help one semester, you could sit down with select members of the executive and advisory boards to come up with a payment plan specifically for you). However, ultimately it is up to the Potential New Member to know what they will be able to afford and choose which sororities she is most interested in accordingly.

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