Greek life tradition: passing down houses

Photo courtesy of Fort Worth senior, Hannah McClard

By Meredith Pratt | Staff Writer

Baylor’s sororities and fraternities differ from most schools in that they do not have official Greek houses. Instead, pass-down houses off campus have been cultivated over the years as hubs for the individual groups.

For large sorority gatherings, such as chapter meetings and All-Universuty Sing practices, sororities meet in individual chapter rooms in the Stacy Riddle Forum. Fraternities also often use the chapel inside the forum for certain traditions.

Frisco junior Hannah Dryden is one of many sorority members who live in a pass-down house. She lives in a Delta Delta Delta house called ‘SUNNY D,’ which she said she thinks is three generations old.

“The girls who passed down the house to us were senior Tri Delts. They all had exec positions,” Dryden said. “One was Tri Delta president.”

Dryden said she really likes the tradition of passing down houses that exists at Baylor.

“Living in a pass-down house is special because you get to see how it has evolved as it has been passed down, and you get to create different memories from different years of life under the same letters and same roof,” Dryden said.

After this school year, Dryden said she and her roommates are passing down the house to younger members.

“Hopefully, it can stay a Tri Delt home for many more generations,” Dryden said.

Dallas senior Travis Smith is a member of Phi Kapa Chi, one of Baylor’s fraternity chapters. Smith lives in a Phi Chi house called Mount Olympus, which he said he and his roommates usually just refer to as “Mount O.”

“The house has been passed down for at least 20 years,” Smith said. “Our current adviser, Kyle Howerton, lived in our house back when he was a Baylor student.”

Smith said he enjoys the tradition because of all the things in his house that have been left from previous generations.

“We have composites, sorority jerseys, random Baylor paraphernalia and other cool things that have been passed down along with the house,” Smith said.

Fort Worth senior Hannah McClard lives in a Pi Beta Phi house called Paradise. She knew the girls who lived in the house previously and got really close with one of them, who ended up becoming her big.

“I’m not entirely sure how many generations it’s been, but I’m pretty sure it’s been a Pi Phi house since the beginning,” McClard said.

McClard also said her experience living in a pass-down house has connected her with alumni who used to live there.

“It’s been sweet meeting Pi Phi alumni and hearing about their friends who lived in Paradise before us,” McClard said.

The tradition is something McClard said she enjoys in the absence of official sorority houses.

“You get to choose a few of your closest friends to live with but still get to have a sorority feel where we can all go to meetings or Sing practice together but not have the overwhelming aspects of living in an official house with your whole sorority,” McClard said.