Greek life: Traditions past and present

The University of Tulsa Greek system was created in 1913 with the “Lucky 13 Club” which was the university football team at the time. Fraternities and sororities are values-based organizations made up of students with similar interests who live within the bonds of ritual, brotherhood and sisterhood, and common goals. The University of Tulsa has 14 chapters of fraternities and sororities that are part of national organizations. They are overseen not only by local leaders and The University of Tulsa, but also by their national headquarters. The geek life traditions at TU have created many lasting memories and history on campus.


Chi Omega

The TU chapter of Chi Omega was founded in 1929 with the most treasured traditions taking place during the holiday season. Every year after returning from Thanksgiving break, members come together and decorate the front room for the holidays with a tree, personal stockings, tinsel and lights. The sorority hosts a sisterhood event on the last day of class every year called “Christmas Bus” members dress-up in holiday sweaters and festive clothing and ride around on a party bus to look at lights in the Tulsa area.

Chi Omega members in holiday sweaters in 2014.
Chi Omega members in holiday sweaters in 2014.

Chi Omega Sing is an annual philanthropy event to raise money for Make A Wish Oklahoma. Other organizations on campus form bands and perform songs for with TU and Chi Omega related lyrics. The event showcases the musical talents of TU students while also raising money for a good cause.


Kappa Delta

Kappa Delta members hang out in a dorm room in 1970.
Kappa Delta members hang out in a dorm room in 1970.

Each year, the sorority hosts a 5K run that is open to the community and benefits The Parent Child Center of Tulsa. This year the run will take place on Oct. 19.

Kappa Delta was the third sorority on campus. In 1998, Kappa Delta began a national collaboration with Girl Scouts, an organization of more than three million girls. With this partnership, Kappa Delta became the first and only National Panhellenic Conference group to adopt the Girl Scouts as a national philanthropy. Kappa Delta was nationally founded in 1897.

A Kappa Delta member and a girl scout make cookies in 2018.
A Kappa Delta member and a girl scout make cookies in 2018.

Lambda Chi

Lambda Chi members at Watermelon Fest in 1970.
Lambda Chi members at Watermelon Fest in 1970.

The fraternity hosts Watermelon benefiting Feeding America. Various campus organizations participate in different watermelon-themed field games.
One of the biggest events of the year is Lambda Chi Luau, a philanthropy volleyball tournament in which campus organizations are invited to create teams and compete with all proceeds going towards Special Olympics of Oklahoma. Lambda Chi Alpha was founded in October 1937 at the University of Tulsa. 


Pi Kappa Alpha

Brothers collect donations for American Cancer Society during a TU basketball game in 2019.

Locally founded on June 6, 1936, Pi Kappa Alpha, or PIKE was the first fraternal organization on the University of Tulsa’s campus. During philanthropy week Pi Kappa Alpha works in part with the American Cancer Society to raise money for cancer research, patient support and greater awareness about cancer prevention. The Pike members organized “Porching for Hope” benefiting American Cancer Society and the alumni homecoming tailgate. Each year Pi Kappa Alpha members attend the regional and national leadership summit.  Pi Kappa Alpha brothers play records in 1959.