I know a lot of chapters illegally initiate new members into their fraternity from time to time. These chapters don’t think it is a big deal to not report these new brothers, and they really like being able to pocket the couple hundred bucks in fees that are supposed to go to the national headquarters. This is a very, very bad practice for many reasons.
First, you are cheating the brother who just got initiated. When they are initiated, they are expecting to be full-fledged brothers in the fraternity. You are cheating them if you don’t do this properly.
Second, inevitably the chapter’s deceit will catch up to them. What happens when a brother who was illegally initiated becomes president? What happens when a brother who was illegally initiated tries to attend a national convention? What happens when an illegally initiated brother gets in trouble? In any of those situations and many more, the national headquarters will become aware that the chapter is illegally initiating brothers and will have to suffer the consequence.
Third, you are hurting your own fraternity. Your national headquarters is expecting that revenue to pay for services that they provide for your entire fraternity. This pays for the professional staff, and all the programs the fraternity runs. In essence, by illegally initiating brothers, you are hurting yourself.
Fourth, if the brother is illegally initiated, chances are the fraternity will never know he existed. My fraternity illegally initiated Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, when he was an undergrad a Pitt. It was years before the national headquarters realized that he was actually a brother. That would have been a terrible loss to our fraternity’s history if we never knew about one of our most accomplished brothers.
I know there are chapters out there are strapped for cash. However, don’t illegally initiate brothers to try to make up the short-fall. You may have a short term gain of a few bucks, but I promise you that the long term impacts far outweigh this benefit.
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