If you’re getting ready to go back to school to face two or more weeks of sorority recruitment, I’ve been in your shoes. I was a mess my freshman year because I genuinely had no idea what to expect. I watched all four seasons of Greek hoping that it would give me the slightest idea, but it didn’t. (Do not try it!!) Thankfully, my stress and anxiety paid off, but it would have been so much better if I did not feel so anxious about recruitment. Choosing a sorority can be a very scary decision to make. I hope these few things can help make this process a little bit easier for you.
1. CHECK OUT THE SORORITIES BEFORE YOU GO INTO RECRUITMENT!
There are definitely sororities that you do not know about. Going onto your Panhellenic Association website and looking at all of your different options is a great idea. Each sorority has a tumblr account where they post pictures of the girls in that chapter. This usually can help a PNM understand the personalities of the girls in the sorority. Another great way of checking out the sororities is if they have a recruitment video. Many schools do not have videos, but for those that do, it’s a quick and fun way at looking at what the girls are like and how they interact together.
2. COME IN WITH AN OPEN MIND
You probably know a bunch of girls in different sororities at your school. This can make things extremely difficult or really easy. When you go into recruitment, it is important not to judge any sorority by who you know or what you think you know. Trust me, you do not know. Make sure that you give each chapter a chance because there is a good chance that you’ll be surprised by what you find out during recruitment.
3. YOU WILL GET CUT FROM HOUSES
Don’t cry. Don’t think you did something wrong. It’s the way recruitment works. Just as you cut down sororities, they do the same for you. This process goes two ways. For example, if you visit a house and the sister feels as if you would not be a good fit, they will cut you just as you would cut them if you felt the same way.
4. DON’T OBSESS OVER OUTFITS
Outfits during recruitment, unfortunately, are the least big deal. If you’re given a PHA shirt that each girl has to wear, there is even more of a reason not to worry. I spent weeks buying and returning dresses, shoes, even jeans, until I found an outfit I deemed perfect. What I didn’t realize, and I’m sure most of you don’t either, is that a sorority sister sees anywhere from 100-400 girls each day, and they’re not going to remember what you were wearing. The one pointer I wish I knew was, in terms of dresses, stay modest. Do not wear a short dress with an open back and cutouts throughout the whole front of the dress. The dress should be classy and if you want to show your personality, add some jewelry!
5. WE ARE JUST AS NERVOUS AS YOU ARE
Coming from the other end, as assistant recruitment chair, I can assure you that being on the other side of the conversation is just as scary. I remember walking into my first house and speaking to my first girl. She told me to calm down and told me about how she remembers being in my exact place. Don’t forget that each girl has gone through the EXACT same thing as you! This should be comforting. Both you and I, and any sister rushing you, wants the conversation to go well.
6. DON’T TALK BADLY ABOUT ANY CHAPTER
This should go without saying, but if it doesn’t – do not speak about any other sorority during recruitment to another sorority. Some schools have Rho Gammas, who lead a number of girls to their houses. These Rho Gammas are members of sororities and do listen to what is being said. Bad mouthing a sorority is truly one of the worst things you can do. This goes for sisters in a sorority as well! If a sorority is talking about another chapter, it is important not to say anything that could be repeated and put you in a bad situation. As much as each chapter would love to have you, word travels fast during recruitment. In addition, if a sorority is talking about another chapter, that’s just as bad because they are spending less time talking about how great their sorority is just to make others think differently about another, and that is just dumb.
7. BRING A BAG AROUND WITH YOU
HIGHLY HIGHLY suggested! They call it spring recruitment, but it’s winter and it’s freezing. During rounds that we were supposed to wear heels or booties, I brought them in a tote bag and wore my Uggs around. Bring a winter jacket and leave it in the bag when you get to the house. At most schools, they’ll give you a place to put the bag so you are not carrying it around during all of recruitment. In the bag, also make sure you have a water bottle or two and a few snacks. Most schools also give you a break slot where you can eat and relax, especially when you have more than ten sororities to visit a day!
8. NO CELL PHONES MEANS NO CELL PHONES
It sounds ridiculous, I know, but pulling out a cell phone could be one of the worst things you could do during recruitment. Using it on the walk to a chapter or during a break is fine! Once you get to a house, there are usually a few women waiting at the door. Walking past them while texting is extremely rude and each second matters!
9. IT’S ONE OF THE LONGEST WEEKS OF YOUR LIFE
The wait over December break is long, don’t get me wrong, but the wait in between weekends to find out what sororities you have left to visit is 100 times longer. Recruitment will be the only subject of conversation and you’ll be asking your friends about their experiences over and over until the next round finally comes five days later! This is normal – don’t worry.
10. BID DAY IS THE MOST EXCITING DAY OF THE YEAR
Opening my bid was the happiest day of my freshman year. For those who do not get their first choice, it happens. If you’re going to take one piece of advice from this article, it’s this: everything happens for a reason. You are placed where you are supposed to be and I fully encourage you to try out whatever it is that is written on your card. Coming off the bus to my sorority was the most exciting thing to happen to me and I can honestly say it was worth every nerve.