If you are interested in Rushing for Deke come by the house, or contact our Rush Chairman Iyad Tarik.
Rush can either refer to a period in which fraternities and sororities accept new members, or can describe a person who is interested in joining fraternities and sororities.
Our fraternity is constitutionally open only to those who meet the following criteria:
1. Registration as a full-time (3.5 or more courses) student at the University of Toronto (All campuses) or Osgoode Hall.
2. Male (Sororities are available for women)
3. A Possession of character and values arguably pursuant to the Objects of Delta Kappa Epsilon.
Our purpose is multi-faceted, although it can seem deceptively simple. Day to day, we're not unlike any other social organization you might join at U of T - We hang around, go to classes together, watch movies, talk about women, and generally do all the things you'd expect any group of young guys to do. Social events with sororities, massive parties, road trips and event nights (Sports, paintball etc.) are also an essential component of our lives.
On a deeper level, however, Deke is also a highly structured network of educated men who work to enhance the quality of life for each other socially, academically and professionally. This commitment extends beyond your undergraduate years into a lifetime of associations with thousands of members spanning chapters across North America.
There is much, much more, but in a nutshell: Deke exists to help its members excel at every phase of their lives through friendships that are both deep and equitable, while nonetheless maintaining a social and moral conscience befitting the leaders of tomorrow.
Don't you have to pay money to be in a fraternity? Isn't it like buying your friends?
No. Membership in Delta Kappa Epsilon is by invitation only, which means that if the house doesn't feel you'll be compatible as a genuine friend to the members of the house, you won't be asked to join. We will not ask men who are incompatible with Deke to become a part of our organization both for their benefit and ours. There are many fraternities on campus, and if your aim is to join one, there is probably one that is right for you and worth the dues you will pay. Furthermore, the dues that active members do pay are put into a fund that ultimately returns to them in the form of the social activities paid for by that same endowment - We are a non-profit organization. The question to ask your self, then, is "Would these guys spend my money the same way I would?". If you're a typical college student, then the answer is almost certainly yes, and by combining our resources financially we are able to secure a great deal more of these things than any of us could alone.
So this isn't just a U of T thing?
No way. Delta Kappa Epsilon is an international fraternity with over seventy chapters in the United States and Canada, all of which a member can call home whenever he visits. Ours is a brotherhood which spans both around the world and back in time to its founding in 1844. Past Dekes include five Presidents of the United States, including George W. Bush, a Premier of Ontario, Canadian Cabinet Ministers as well as many major figures in commerce, art, and science.
My student handbook states that fraternities are not recognized by the university. Is it because you're a bunch of animals?
No. The reason we are not recognized by the University is because our organization is exclusively open to men and therefore discriminates on the basis of sex. Despite this distinction, however, Deke easily represents one of the most ethnically, politically and religiously diverse organizations at U of T. Unlike many "official" university clubs, which technically allow all to join and then market themselves exclusively to specific sections of the student body, Deke does not explicitly subscribe itself to any group. We measure a man strictly according to his merits and nothing more.
As well, our property is privately owned by the fraternity, and we are thus not subject to the rules which typically regulate conduct in student residences.
So you guys have a frat house?
Of course! The Deke Mansion is located at 157 St. George Street (Two blocks north of St. George and Bloor) and was bought by the fraternity decades ago from the Eaton family for a single dollar (they didn't want to pay the property taxes). Our house features a TV room with stadium-style seating. We also have a full-sized billiards table, ping-pong, a DJ booth, dining room, massive kitchen with gas-range stove, and much more. As a member of Deke, the house is yours to use freely in whatever time or capacity you wish.
What kind of commitment am I looking at if I join?
Every brother in DKE decides their own level of involvement, and those who choose to contribute more than others are not superior in any way - they just enjoy it. The only things that all active members of a chapter are committed to do are undergo a pledging and initiation process and, following their induction into full membership, attend weekly chapter meetings on Monday nights which last about an hour and can be occasionally missed.
Sounds interesting. What can I do to get involved?
Deke is open to prospective members at any time during the school year. We have a lot of great events going on specifically for the purpose of welcoming you into our house, including bar nights, sports, games and sorority exchanges. We invite you to come by and visit any evening. You'll be welcomed at the door with a handshake and a beer… that's the Deke way.
A pledge is a man in the fraternity who has been asked to join but has not yet undergone initiation. During this pledge period, the pledge can expect to learn more about the house and fraternity through getting to know active members, performing duties within the house, and helping to host the massive parties that Deke is known for. Nothing that occurs during the pledge period is cruel, unusual, or would compromise our obvious goal of making you our friend; brothers of DKE see their pledging as a time where they came to value the house, its history, and the people that inhabit it.
Initiation is a subject that is traditionally associated with fraternal organizations in a very negative way. Although there have been isolated occurrences of severe pledge mistreatment in rogue chapters of various fraternities who are indeed choosing to ignore the true traditions they were founded on, our chapter would like to make it known to potential members that we do not condone or practice what is commonly known as "hazing" in any way. Initiation is an experience that unites the members of Deke and it is no reason for a man who wants to join to withdraw his consideration. As it is a secret aspect of our society, many questions about initiation simply cannot be answered. This does not mean that initiation is bad - it is simply private.
Like any group of college men, many members of Deke drink socially. At the same time, we are also like any group of college men in that we have members who drink far less than others, and some who abstain from alcohol entirely for reasons ranging from fitness to religion and spirituality. The Greek System has been progressively moving away from alcohol-focused social events in recognition of the fact that drug abuse in general undermines not only the lives of our members, but also the care of our property, the integrity of our studies, and the values of our organizations.
At Deke, our stance is slightly more liberal than that of some other fraternities and sororities on campus who have chosen to formally legislate against the use of alcohol. This is because we believe in the right of a legal adult to choose. We also believe in the duty of those who do choose to consume alcohol to respect the space and beliefs of those who choose to abstain, and vice-versa. In this and so many other ways, Deke is about learning to co-exist in a world where not everyone is the same.
While some members may take a slightly irreverent attitude towards their schooling, rest assured that becoming a member of Deke does not cause instant academic death. Through our social network, members of Deke can consult other members who have taken a particular class before them and seek advice on how to succeed in it. Many members archive essays for the consultation of other members. During exam time, moral support for those 2 A.M cram sessions can often come in the form of other Dekes offering to study with you.
As a grown adult responsible for himself, however, learning to find a unique balance between work and play is something a man largely has to learn to do independently. By offering a scenario in which both are provided in generous proportions, Deke can be a great opportunity to learn more about life both in and after university.
Living at the Deke House
The Deke House can be a highly practical place to live for the student lifestyle. It's close to campus, transit, shops of all kinds as well as bars and clubs. If you have never lived downtown before (or if you have and don't want to give it up!) then rushing Deke might be right for you. Active members of the chapter have first priority at renting rooms in the house, so as a new member your spot would be assured. Rent is between $340-$500 a month depending on the size of the room you rent, although larger rooms traditionally go to officers of the fraternity.