Second Year Exemption for Fraternity Housing Policy

Miami University recognizes the benefits of a strong fraternity and sorority community to the undergraduate experience. An important component of that experience is providing the opportunity for undergraduate students to live with their chapter brothers in a safe environment that is supportive of a student’s academic success and personal development. 


Chapter House Exemption Policy and Requirements

University recognized fraternity chapters may obtain approval to house second year students who are active members of the chapter. The following expectations must be met by fall semester each year to house sophomore students:

  • Chapters that want to receive a chapter exemption to house sophomore students must submit their application to the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life no later than March of the previous semester.
  • Chapters must have a live-in house director.
  • Chapter new member class overall GPA may not decrease more than 10% from their GPA in the semester before they joined.
  • Chapters must be in compliance with the National Interfraternity Conference Health and Safety Initiatives, which "prohibits the presence of alcohol products above 15% ABV in any chapter facility or at any chapter event, except when served by a licensed third-party vendor."
  • 30% of the house must be occupied by upper classmen (juniors and/or seniors)
  • The chapter officers/executive board members are recommended to be in the house
  • Facility must select Damp/Dry and each organization must follow their national organization's policies or one that is stricter. A damp facility allows alcohol to be present only in the personal rooms of those members who are of legal drinking age; a dry facility does not allow any alcohol in the facility. We support national policies regarding dry chapter facilities.
  • The chapter must comply with all City of Oxford Zoning and Fire Safety inspections and policies, and the fire department must recommend that each house meets the fire department standards. Chapters that have ongoing violations, as determined by the Cliff Alexander Office in partnership with the Oxford Fire Department, will lose the second year exemption.
  • Miami University Code of Student Conduct – In order to be eligible, a Chapter may not have been on disciplinary probation, been suspended, or had its recognition revoked by Miami University within the 12 month period prior to the application. In the case of expansion or the re-start of an organization, the chapter must be in good standing with Miami University for one full year and meet the above requirements before they will be considered for the exemption.
  • Chapters must provide a list of annex houses (defined as houses where 50% or more of the residents are chapter members).
  • Chapters will provide a list of residents' information for each annex property.

Rescission of Approval

Second Year Residency Approval is a privilege and not a right and may be revoked at any time that the University, in its sole discretion, determines that it is in the best interests of students to do so. While it is not possible to list all the circumstances that may lead to rescission of approval, the following are examples of some of the circumstances in which the University's approval may be rescinded:

  • The Chapter fails to cooperate in a University investigation of alleged Chapter or member misconduct.
  • The Chapter is summarily suspended, suspended, or their University recognition is revoked.
  • The Chapter is suspended by their national headquarters.
  • The Chapter does not meet the second year exemption chapter requirements.
  • Health or safety of students living in the facility is at risk.

The Chapter is advised and acknowledges that the University is not responsible for any lost rent or for any other losses or damages of any sort that may result from a revocation of the Second Year Residency Approval.

Individual Requirements for Second Year Exemption

  • Second year students who want to live in a fraternity house must turn in their application to the Interfraternity Council no later than February of the previous semester.
  • Second year students who want to live in a fraternity house must have a 2.75 cumulative GPA the Spring Semester of their application. Spring semester grades will be processed in May of each year.
  • Students must not have any conduct violations reported through the Office of Community Standards. All prohibited conduct and categories for denial will be reviewed by the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, IFC, and the IFC Conduct Board (See Policy Library) on a case by case basis. 

Second Year Exemption Conduct Policy for Individuals Seeking Exemption


In order to further the standards and expectations set forth by the new Focus on Fraternity, the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and the Miami University Interfraternity Council have added provisions to the Second Year Exemption Policy.  The provisions take a student’s conduct history into account during the application process.  The inclusion of conduct history as a part of the Second Year Exemption will hold our community to a higher standard while reinforcing the philosophy that the Exemption is a privilege.


The University reserves the right to deny the Exemption based on conduct violations including, but not limited to, the following:

Any student who has been found responsible for committing the following violations of the Student Code of Conduct will be denied the Exemption:

  • (102) Dishonesty
  • (103A) Sexual Misconduct, Interpersonal Violence, or Sexual Harassment
  • (103B) Endangering Health and Safety
  • (104) Damage, Theft, Trespass, Unauthorized Use of Property
  • (105A) Intoxication or Prohibited Use of Liquor
  • (106A) Prohibited Use of Drugs
  • (106B) Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
  • (107) Weapons
  • (108) Discrimination / Harassment
  • (109) Hazing
  • (113) Disorderly Conduct

Any student who has been found responsible for committing the following violations of the Student Code of Conduct will be reviewed on a case by case basis that will consider the entirety of the disciplinary history and may be denied:

  • (101) Interfering with a University Function
  • (105B) Prohibited Use of Fermented Alcohol / Open Container
  • (110) Violation of University Rules or Law
  • (112) Abuse of Technology
  • (114) Complicity
  • (115) Retaliation
  • (116) Violation of Sanctions
  • (117.1) Residence Hall Policy
  • (117.2) Soliciting Policy>
  • (117.3) Smoke and Tobacco Free Policy
  • (117.5) Recreational Sports Rules and Regulations
  • (117.6) Housing, Dining, Recreation, and Business Services Rules and Regulations
  • (118) Unauthorized Use of University Keys or Access Cards

Any student who is currently on university probation or who has been previously suspended from Miami University due to behavior conduct will be denied the Exemption.

There will be no appeals to this policy.

Conduct records will be pulled in March and May as a part of the Individual Second Year Exemption process.

Important Dates for the 2020 Exemption Process (2021 Dates to Come)

  • February 12: Email to Chapter Advisors, Housing Corporations, Chapter Presidents, New Member Educators, and House Managers outlining the process and their role in the second year exemption process.
  • February 14: Email sent to all new members outlining requirements for Online Greek New Member Course, Greek Step Up, New Member Convocation, and second year exemption. Link to the application will be in the email.
  • February 15: Chapters must submit all application forms for sophomore students living in the chapter house online. Chapters must also submit to IFC their list of sophomores who would like to live in the house along with a list of upper classmen that will be living in the house.
  • February 26, 2020: Individual Application for Exemption due by 5:00 pm
  • March 6: Chapter Second Year Exemption Application due to the Cliff Alexander Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life
  • March 18: Initial Approval letters to second year students and their parents will be sent out.
  • March 22: All sophomore names (conditionally approved) will be turned over to the Campus Services office to excuse sophomore students from their campus contracts.
  • May 27: Grades and conduct checks will be run for the individual exemption confirming all eligible men, and non-eligible sophomore names will be turned over to the Campus Services office for campus placement.
  • June 4: Individual Notifications sent to second year students and their parents for those not eligible after the semester grade check.

Chapters With Second Year Exemption 2020-2021

Due to Covid-19 and its ongoing implications for public health, the university is now allowing sophomore students to be exempt from the requirement to live in a residence hall for the 2020 - 2021 school year. As a result, individual sophomore students are now eligible to live off campus if they choose, including signing a lease to live in a fraternity house.

Please be aware that the fraternity must still abide by the requirements listed above under Chapter House Exemption Requirements and Policies in order to be able to offer spots in the house to sophomore students. The Second Year Exemption application and selection process will resume as usual for Spring and Fall 2021 unless circumstances related to the continued spread of Covid-19 dictate otherwise. The important dates listed above will be updated as plans progress.