Perhaps one of the most prominent symbols of fraternity and sorority life are wooden fraternity and sorority paddles that fill the rooms and hallways of many chapter houses all around the nation.
However, sometimes fraternity and sorority paddles come with the connotation of pledge hazing, particularly because of their shape and unpleasant national history. Because of concerns like this, paddles are banned in some houses, or forced to be called “wooden ornaments.”
The truth of the matter is, that paddles are nothing but a time-honored Greek tradition of welcoming new members to their respective houses. New fraternity members often receive pledge names that are proudly adorned on the paddles. New sorority members are given hand-crafted sorority paddles from their big sisters that represent the family of their sorority.
These paddles are not used for hazing. They are meant as a genuine present for a new sister and are just another way of showing your pride for your sorority. And they are one of the many ways to express your pride for your organization.