Members of Kappa Alpha Psi brand themselves to symbolize their loyalty to the organization and commitment to its values. Being branded can be seen as reflecting bravery, shared culture and an expression of manhood.
The practice of branding for fraternity members is more common among traditionally black fraternities, such as Kappa Alpha Psi and Omega Psi Chi. Some historians have argued that the ritual of branding is similar to African rites of passage involving tribal marks. Obtaining one's brand by choice and as a point of pride, rather than being branded by force as a slave would be, is also part of the history of fraternity branding.
Branding is not sanctioned by the governing bodies of fraternal organizations.