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Parents FAQ

Parents FAQ

How can the sorority help my daughter?

Tri Sigma empowers women to change the world, first through a focus on scholarship and a commitment to service. Through a variety of events and programs, members will develop their leadership and critical transferrable skills; learn to effectively manage their time and conflicts; and have the opportunity to build their personal and professional networks. Members not only benefit from their collegiate experience, but also have the ability to remain involved beyond college as alumnae.

What is required of my daughter to join the sorority?

Each chapter has specific scholarship, financial, and participation expectations of its members. Your daughter will need to meet the required GPA and/or amount of study hours; pay all dues and fees on time; and attend the minimum amount of chapter events and activities in order to remain a member in good standing. If you or your daughter has questions about these requirements, please contact the chapter advisor, or call National Headquarters and ask to speak to the Assistant Director of Chapter Services. 

My daughter is a new member; what happens now?

A woman is considered a new member after going through the first of three ritual ceremonies, called Arc Degree.  During Arc Degree, the date of initiation is announced. The new member program culminates with the second ritual ceremony, or Triangle Degree. Your daughter will be considered a fully initiated and active member of Sigma Sigma Sigma upon completion of this initiation ceremony.   As Tri Sigma history dictates, she will be expected to wear white for all ceremonial meetings. 

The ideal new member program is 6-8 weeks; however, it shall not exceed 8 weeks.  During those weeks, new members will be guided through a scripted program, called Essential Sigma, by the Vice President of New Member Education.  The program is designed to educate them on history and operations, and begin to develop their leadership skills.  They will also have responsibilities which mirror those of the initiated members.  This can include study hours, participation requirements, paying dues, having leadership positions, and upholding the standards of the Sorority.  Maintaining these responsibilities will ensure your daughter is on track to be initiated.

What is your Anti-Hazing policy?

Tri Sigma has adopted a zero-tolerance policy against hazing. Any woman found accountable for hazing will no longer have the privilege of membership.  Some signs to watch out for:  

  • Not having enough time to study.
  • Does not feel included or supported by the chapter.
  • Tri Sigma programming every night of the week and it is going past 10 or 11pm.
  • Grades are slipping significantly.
  • Acting strange or secretive about chapter programming.
  • Cannot be reached easily as a new member (especially close to initiation).
  • Having to drink excessive amounts or run errands for members.
  • Requirement of carrying certain items around campus or to class.
  • Servitude or cleaning members’ living spaces.
  • Fatigue or lack of sleep.
  • Excessive hours required to be a new member - a normal week includes 5-7 hours of meetings/activities.
  • Appearance of mental exhaustion or withdrawal from normal lifestyle.

While not all of these would be an indicator of hazing, it may be a red flag for excessive programming, bullying or mean girl behavior, or poor leadership. School comes first. If a woman is not having a healthy, balanced experience, we’d like the opportunity to support her and advise the chapter in areas of improvement.

If you have any concerns, contact National Headquarters at 540.459.4212 and ask to speak with your chapter's Assistant Director of Chapter Services. As a common practice, we do not disclose the name or information about a caller reporting concerns. We do hope to obtain the caller’s name and number in case we have additional questions for clarification which might help us address concerns. 

How can I be involved with my daughter’s experience?

We encourage parents and guardians to be a part of this exciting time in their daughter’s life, and recommend the ideas below as just some of the ways you can get involved with her sorority experience: 

  • Ask questions, look through pictures, and sift through the website and social media.
  • Discuss time management; juggling class, homework, and new experiences can be difficult.
  • Attend Family weekend or other planned events for families and friends.
  • Consider looking at the merchandise page for a shirt or cup (new members are entitled to wear all insignia except items with the crest or the badge. These are both reserved for initiated members) to celebrate her Arc Degree (first ritual ceremony and marks her new member commitment), jewelry to mark her initiation, contributing to the Foundation in honor of your daughter’s initiation/birthday/election to a leadership position.
  • See if the chapter or House Corporation has a Parents Club (or consider starting one).
  • Attend the chapter Founders Day events.
  • Make a contribution to the chapter’s Philanthropic events.
  • Ask questions about recruitment, big sister, weekly meetings, and upcoming events.
  • Learn about other opportunities by getting in touch with the President, Chapter Advisor, or the House Corporation. New members should receive this information in the form of a contact list. There may also be a parents’ newsletter you can request to receive.
  • Be mindful of conflict.  Create an open dialog with your daughter about the relationships she has and help her learn how to resolve conflict effectively.  One often used philosophy Tri Sigma employs is one presented by Douglas Stone in Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most.
  • Pay your daughter’s lifetime alumnae dues as graduation gift.

What does an ideal experience look like?

An Ideal Experience is when your daughter is …

  • Excited about going to chapter meetings.
  • Focused on academics and her scholarship goals.
  • Communicating positive messages instead of those indicating being scared, intimidated, or stressed.
  • Feeling that the chapter communicates a message that academics come first.
  • Being held accountable for actions and appropriate behavior.
  • Learning new things about herself through her Tri Sigma experiences.
  • Enhancing leadership and personal development skills.
  • Serving her local and campus community.
  • Supported by the members and new members in her chapter.

Who do I contact if my daughter is having trouble within her chapter?

If you have questions about your daughter's experience, she can be your first resource followed by the local chapter advisor, then either the campus or National Support systems. Nationally, each chapter has an assigned Regional Consultant, Assistant Director of Chapter Services, and Director of Chapter 

Services working to support and guide the chapter. You may reach any of these support resources by contacting National Headquarters at 540.459.4212.

You can view all of our national policies on our National Harm Reduction page