Currently, there are 29 recognized Greek organizations at UR, and according to Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs Monica Smalls, 17 of these are fraternities and 12 are sororities. Approximately 22 percent of students belong to Greek organizations. Greek life is nothing new to the university, and, believe it or not, has been around since the university’s first day.
The first Greek organization established on campus was Alpha Delta Phi. The fraternity was founded at Hamilton College in 1832 and the Rochester Chapter was founded in 1850. The house that is currently the Inter-Campus Music Center has traditionally been occupied by ADF and is almost 80 years old. According to former president and senior Bijan Pajoohi, the fraternity will be moving back into their house this fall.
It was not easy, as the ADF Web site explains, for the chapter to get underway in 1850. The group of men from Madison University, now Colgate University, met a great deal of opposition from the administration here at UR. The administration was quite unhappy with the notion of establishing any secret societies on campus. Thus, ADF’s chapter was not officially recognized until May 31, 1852. According to the fraternity’s history online, the chapter was first called the Empire Chapter, which remained the name for approximately 10 years, when it became known as the Rochester Chapter, and has remained this way ever since.
Not only was ADF the first Greek group on campus, it was actually founded before the university started, which makes this chapter extremely rich in history.
“It is an honor to be part of the only organization that precedes the existence of University of Rochester,” Pajoohi said. “The tumultuous recent history of ADF and the university is unfortunate, but our long history of contributions that ADF has made and will make to the university is unparalleled by any other organization.”
Hopefully, if all goes well, there will be many generations of ADF brothers at UR.