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North-American Interfraternity Conference
Data
Established 1909
Members 73
Continent North America
Country United Statesmarker
Headquarters Indianapolis, Indianamarker
Organization type Trade association


The North-American Interfraternity Conference (or NIC), (formerly known as the National Interfraternity Conference) is an association of collegiate men's fraternities that was formally organized in 1910, although it began on November 27, 1909. The power of the organization rests in a House of Delegates where each member fraternity is represented by a single delegate. However, the group’s executive and administrative powers are vested in an elected board of directors consisting of nine volunteers from various NIC fraternities. Headquartered in Indianapolismarker, Indianamarker, the NIC also operates a small professional staff.

The NIC seeks to provide services including, “but not be limited to, promotion of cooperative action in dealing with fraternity matters of mutual concern, research in areas of fraternity operations and procedures, fact-finding and data gathering, and the dissemination of such data to the member fraternities.” However, it notes that “[c]onference action shall not in any way abrogate the right of its member fraternities to self-determination.”

As of October 2009, the NIC had seventy-three member organizations with 5,500 chapters located on over 800 campuses in the United Statesmarker and Canadamarker with approximately 350,000 undergraduate members.

Originally the Interfraternity Conference, in 1931 the name was changed to the National Interfraternity Conference. Finally, to reflect the organization's Canadian membership, the current name was adopted in 1999.

Membership requirements

Member

The NIC membership requirements are detailed in the By-Laws of the North-American Interfraternity Conference. Each member fraternity must be national or international in scope, as opposed to local, which is defined to mean having five chapters of ten men each, having three chapters which have been part of the fraternity for at least five years, and have a constitution that calls for national conventions with interim authority vested in a smaller governing body. Further, each fraternity must be exclusive of other NIC members and, therefore, in competition with them for the purposes of recruitment. All members' chapters must exist at four or two-year degree granting colleges. The members agree to share "best practices, statistics and information that will benefit member organizations."

Also, the members agree to uphold universal fraternal ideals, to hold their individual chapters and colonies to their general vision statements, honor NIC resolutions, abide by the NIC Constitution and By-Laws, attend all meetings of the House of Delegates, and pay membership dues.

Each member fraternity must share a wealth of statistical information with the NIC including the number of new members, new member retention, the number of new initiates, total number of initiates, annual retention rate, the number of new chapters and their size, the number of closed chapters and the reason for closure, the total number of active chapters, number of members who are "campus leaders", number of hours of community service completed, and amount of money raised for charitable causes. This information is aggregated, and the raw data is destroyed.

The NIC requires its members to support open expansion on their campuses. It requires that its members are insured and have risk management programs. It imposes a grade requirement on new members and initiated members. It denies members from having women's auxiliary groups. It requires alcohol free recruitment and new member programs, and new member programs are capped at twelve weeks and encouraged to be shorter. Finally, each member must have provisions for the emergency temporary suspension of any of its chapters.

NIC members are required to "communicate its values through its ritual at least annually or as prescribed by its policies."

Campus

The NIC also places requirements on its host campuses. It requires that campuses share statistical data with the NIC and individual chapters of NIC members. It requires that for credit leadership courses be available each semester for all new members. It requires open expansion and open recruitment, meaning that any local Interfraternity Council (IFC) will not prohibit any NIC organization from joining it and that the school, itself, will not prevent any NIC member from recruiting on campus. The NIC expects the campus to encourage faculty, through incentives, to become chapter advisors. It expects each campus to provide impartial judicial processes, with the right to appeal any decision. The NIC also expects campuses to provide financial management, property, and accounts collection support to chapters. It requires that programs designed to prevent problem behaviors not be limited to Greek-letter organizations. Finally, it demands work to reestablish a five-day long academic week.

Mission

The NIC serves to advocate the needs of its member fraternities through enrichment of the fraternity experience; advancement and growth of the fraternity community; and enhancement of the educational mission of the host institutions. The NIC is also committed to enhancing the benefits of fraternity membership. Each of the 71 member organizations has adopted basic expectations of their members and agreed to the following Nine Basic Expectations.

  1. I will know and understand the ideals expressed in my fraternity ritual and will strive to incorporate them in my daily life.
  2. I will strive for academic achievement and practice academic integrity.
  3. I will respect the dignity of all persons; therefore I will not physically, mentally, psychologically or sexually abuse or harm any human being.
  4. I will protect the health and safety of all human beings.
  5. I will respect my property and the property of others; therefore, I will neither abuse nor tolerate the abuse of property.
  6. I will meet my financial obligations in a timely manner.
  7. I will neither use nor support the use of illegal drugs; I will neither misuse nor support the misuse of alcohol.
  8. I acknowledge that a clean and attractive environment is essential to both physical and mental health; therefore, I will do all in my power to see that the chapter property is properly cleaned and maintained.
  9. I will challenge all my fraternity members to abide by these fraternal expectations and will confront those who violate them.


NIC meetings

The NIC is not a governing or regulatory board. It is a voluntary trade association; therefore, it is important that the leadership of the organization gather on a regular basis. This occurs annually at the NIC Congressional Reception and the NIC Annual Meeting.

At the congressional reception, the leadership of the NIC, National Panhellenic Conference (NPC), National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), and the National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations (NALFO) sponsor a series of meetings and receptions to advance an agenda that is positive toward fraternal organizations. Legislative priorities are determined with current emphasis on the College Fire Prevention Act which authorizes federal funding to upgrade fire safety in college dormitories and fraternity/sorority housing. It is estimated that there is $3.7 billion worth of fraternity housing, most of which is currently not fitted with fire prevention devices such as sprinklers. Other legislative priorities include Freedom of Association, Freedom of Speech, student privacy, and single sex exemptions under Title IX.

The NIC increased its membership to 68 in 2006 when Alpha Phi Alpha, Beta Chi Theta, Phi Sigma Kappa and Sigma Phi Delta were added to the roster. Alpha Phi Alpha will have dual membership in the NIC and NPHC. The four groups were welcomed into the NIC by NIC President James R. Estes at the opening ceremonies of the NIC Annual Meeting. In his welcome, Estes commented that these fraternities “bring a rich tradition of fraternity ideals to the conference. We are thrilled that they have joined the conference and look forward to working with them in the coming years.” “We look forward to including these organizations in our educational programming, campus visits, and community events,” said NIC Executive Vice President Jon Williamson. “As our community grows, so does our ability to reach out to all members of the fraternal community. Our work is based on ensuring a bright future for all fraternities,” Williamson added.

Public relations efforts

The North-American Interfraternity Conference has conducted research which suggests that to most effectively improve its public perception, high school juniors and seniors should be the primary focus of its public relations campaign. Specifically, the NIC would like to convince these students that their values align with those of the fraternity system before they enter the college environment.

Additionally, the North-American Interfraternity Conference believes that fraternity involvement supports the retention and success of college students, and, therefore, that strong partnerships between the fraternity and university community will have a positive effect on both communities. Moreover, they believe that support from the university community is essential to the success on the NIC's public relations initiatives.

Educational programming

Five permanent staff members create learning opportunities for all undergraduate men through a variety of programs, most notably the Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute (UIFI), IMPACT, Futures Quest, Recruitment Program, Alumni Academy, and the Alcohol Summit. The purpose of the NIC is to promote service, scholarship, the opportunity for self-development, and brotherhood.

The Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute (UIFI) is a five day co-educational program that brings fraternity and sorority leaders together and teaches leadership skills, creates awareness of important issues, and calls on each graduate of the program to lead a change initiative within his/her fraternity/sorority community. The program, begun in 1990, has over 4600 graduates since its inception. In addition, over 120 fraternity/sorority advisors, staff, and volunteers participate each year as facilitators during the program. These facilitators support the work of the NIC staff by leading small group discussions that personalize the experience throughout the institute. St. Jude Children's Research Hospital has become an active partner in the UIFI curriculum by sponsoring the Service component of the curriculum.

IMPACT is a campus based weekend program that brings fraternity and sorority community leaders together to identify a strategy for change and/or improvement to the local fraternal experience. IMPACT is an acronym for Influence, Motivation, Purpose, Action, Commitment, and Trust. These are the five ideals that the curriculum of the program emphasizes. The campus leaders work together during the course of the weekend to identify what needs to change in order to ensure a bright future for the entire community. The staff of the NIC leads these programs throughout the year.

Futures Quest brings together the newest members of the fraternity community. In order to participate, these men will have joined a fraternity in the previous year. The curriculum of Futures Quest is designed to allow the participants to begin their fraternal journey in a very positive way and builds an awareness of the vast scope of the opportunities that are available to each of them. During the experience, these men will identify a personal action plan for what he wants to accomplish during his years in college and beyond. The participants leave the program with a feeling of confidence and their self-esteem is affirmed. This in turn positively influences the fraternities as these men assume the leadership positions.

The most important aspect of the fraternal experience may be the need to invite new members to join a fraternity each year. As a result, the NIC offers a program to its members that teaches participants new skills in recruitment and focuses on the positive aspects of membership. The Recruitment Program is one of the most important programs offered by the NIC. Not only does it ensure that membership in fraternities will continue, it also teaches vital skills that each participant can use beyond the fraternal experience. The program makes the direct statement, "If you want to recruit me, then you better have a plan." The goal of the program is that every participant has a plan of action for their recruitment goals.

Programs are offered for alumni members of fraternities as well. Vital to the success of the undergraduate chapters, is the importance of having chapter advisors and alumni mentors. The Alumni Academy is an opportunity for alumni members of fraternities to identify ways to serve the fraternity as a chapter advisor, house corporation member, and/or mentor. In addition, the alumni are re-educated about the purpose of fraternity in the lives of young men and the newer aspects of the fraternity experience in today's society. Finally, the academy forms a community from among the alumni boards that are on each campus. It brings together the alumni role models, getting them to solve campus issues while recognizing the effectiveness of teamwork.

The NIC is always seeking ways in which it may develop new initiatives to enhance the work of its member organizations. In 2000, the NIC received a $750,000 cooperative grant from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This signaled the beginning of efforts to reach into the college community and have students determine the best course of action to take to deal with the number one issue on college campuses - alcohol. The Alcohol Summit is designed to bring together a coalition of students to discuss alcohol issues and create lasting outcomes to address the effects of alcohol and high risk drinking behaviors.

Members



Fraternity Founding Date Active Collegiate Groups Collegiate Charters Granted Collegiate Members Total Initiates
Acacia 1904 36 93 47,000
Alpha Chi Rho 1895 41 93 30,500
Alpha Delta Gamma 1924 11 27
Alpha Delta Phi 1832 30 51 1100
Alpha Epsilon Pi 1913 134 235 82,000
Alpha Gamma Rho 1904 72 65,000
Alpha Gamma Sigma 1923 8
Alpha Kappa Lambda 1914 30 79
Alpha Phi Alpha 1906 414 175,000
Alpha Phi Delta 1914 98
Alpha Sigma Phi 1845 66 42,000
Alpha Tau Omega 1865 132 250 6,500 181,000
Beta Chi Theta 1999 11 400
Beta Sigma Psi 1925 10 25
Beta Theta Pi 1839 120 5,911 183,769
Chi Phi 1854 58 113 60,000
Chi Psi 1841 31
Delta Chi 1890 126 94,000
Delta Kappa Epsilon 1844 52
Delta Phi 1827 15
Delta Psi 1847 10
Delta Sigma Phi 1899 105 4,500 110,000
Delta Tau Delta 1858 117 6,031 150,590
Delta Upsilon 1834 84 151 110,000
FarmHouse 1905 33 42
Iota Nu Delta 1994 10 10
Iota Phi Theta 1963 270 30,000
Kappa Alpha Order 1865 128 5,000 141,000
Kappa Alpha Psi 1911 350 150,000
Kappa Alpha Society 1825 7 14
Kappa Delta Phi 1900 14 31
Kappa Delta Rho 1905 36 75
Lambda Chi Alpha 1909 200 300 10,000 270,000
Lambda Phi Epsilon 1981 33 48
Lambda Sigma Upsilon 1979 53
Lambda Theta Phi 1975 93
Nu Alpha Kappa 1988 21
Omega Delta Phi 1987 50
Phi Beta Sigma 1914
Phi Gamma Delta 1848 114 6,500 162,000
Phi Iota Alpha 1931 52 71
Phi Kappa Psi 1852 114
Phi Kappa Sigma 1850 48 120
Phi Kappa Tau 1906 94 145 90,000
Phi Kappa Theta 1959 49
Phi Lambda Chi 1920 8 16
Phi Mu Delta 1918 11 38 300 18,000
Phi Sigma Kappa 1873 79 2,500 115,000
Phi Sigma Phi 1988 9
Pi Kappa Alpha 1868 217 240,000
Pi Kappa Phi 1904 142 211 6,857 101,006
Pi Lambda Phi 1895 38 120
Psi Upsilon 1833 23 45
Sigma Alpha Epsilon 1856 225 301 8,200 289,244
Sigma Alpha Mu 1909 69
Sigma Beta Rho 1996 35
Sigma Chi 1855 228 11,343 263,975
Sigma Lambda Beta 1986 115 126
Sigma Nu 1869 184 219,000
Sigma Phi Delta 1924 12 28 8,300
Sigma Phi Epsilon 1901 257 14,353 262,000
Sigma Phi Society 1827 9
Sigma Pi 1897 133 222 90,000
Sigma Tau Gamma 1920 67 136 50,000
Tau Delta Phi 1910 6 63
Tau Epsilon Phi 1910 30 46
Tau Kappa Epsilon 1899 274 466 9,432 250,000
Theta Chi 1856 138 216 6,896 166,231
Theta Delta Chi 1847 29 66 46,000
Theta Xi 1864 53 114 60,000
Triangle 1907 32 45
Zeta Beta Tau 1898 71 110,000
Zeta Psi 1847 51 81 20,000


In 2002, Kappa Sigma, Phi Delta Theta, and Phi Sigma Kappa, withdrew their membership in the NIC due to disagreements with the strategic direction of the organization. Phi Sigma Kappa rejoined the NIC in 2006.

Further reading

A Diamond Jubilee History of The National Interfraternity Conference: 75 Glorious Years by Jack L. Anson, 1984

References



External links




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