How To Rock Sorority Recruitment
Sorority recruitment, or rush as you may know it, is a whirlwind experience, a time bound to be as equally exciting as it is stressful. It’s a time for new friendships, sisterly bonding, and a whole lot of fun. Whether you’ve always dreamed of joining a house or just recently began to entertain the idea, here are some tips to help you rock sorority recruitment.
Here’s some helpful terms you may want to know before you begin recruitment:
Rush: another term for sorority recruitment.
Active: an initiated member who has already gone through recruitment.
Legacy: a daughter, granddaughter, or sister of an initiated member of a sorority.
New member: someone who has accepted a bid from a sorority but has not yet been initiated.
Potential new member (PNM): a woman who is eligible to go through recruitment.
Rushee: another term for a woman going through recruitment or sorority rush.
Recruitment counselor: a current sorority member who serves as your guide during recruitment.
Recommendation letter: a letter written by a former sorority member who recommends a potential new member for membership.
Preference round: the last round of recruitment.
Quota: the total number of new bids a sorority is able to offer during recruitment.
Total: the total number of current and new potential members allowed for a chapter.
Membership Recruitment Acceptance Binding Agreement (MRABA): a binding agreement a potential new member signs when they rank chapters after the preference round. Potential new members agree to accept a bid from a chapter listed on their MRABA. After signing the agreement, if the PNM receives a bid and declines it, she is not allowed to accept a bid for another year. However, if the PNM does not receive a bid, they are eligible for continuous open bidding.
Silence: the period between the last round of recruitment and bid day in which there is no communication between potential new and active members.
Bid: a formal invitation to join a sorority.
Bid day: the final day of recruitment. On this day, formal invitations to join the sorority are given out and a celebration is held so that new and current members can get to know each other better.
Snap bidding: chapters who did not meet their quota during recruitment can offer bids to potential new members who were not matched with a sorority after the preference round.
Continuous open bidding: chapters who did not meet their quota can continue to offer bids to women who have and have not gone through formal recruitment until the quota is met.
Initiation: the ceremony or process that transitions new members into active members of a sorority. Each chapter’s initiation ceremony is unique.
New Panhellenic Association Conference: the body that governs the 26 international women’s fraternities and sororities.
Now that you know some basic terms, what is recruitment like?
How long does it last and what can you expect? Well, the answer is that it depends. If you attend a large university with a large population of Greek students, recruitment is usually a formal affair. On the other hand, if you attend a smaller university or college, recruitment tends to be less structured and formal. Regardless, sorority recruitment consists of several rounds that span over the course of several days during which sisters of each house meet potential new members.
At each house and each event, sisters and rushees will talk with one another, sing songs, dance, and even work on projects, skits, or other activities together. After each round, rushees will rank each house according to their preferences. Each house will also rank their potential new members. These women will then receive invitations to the houses that would like to see them back.
Depending on how your school structures sorority recruitment, you may be required to visit each house, regardless of whether you would be interested in joining or not, or you may have the ability to choose which houses you would like to visit at the beginning of recruitment. No matter what, as each day of rush goes by, you will visit fewer houses.
At the end of recruitment, each house will give out formal bids to the women they think will be good fits for their sorority. This day is called bid day and usually involves a big celebration as the sisters welcome new members. After accepting a bid, recruits become pledges and begin the initiation process.
Now that you know more about how recruitment works, how can you rock it?
Prepare yourself by learning a little about each house before you register for recruitment. Talk with family members or friends if you are hesitant about going through recruitment or if you’re not sure if sorority life would be a good fit for you. You want to be sure that you can balance the additional responsibilities with any school work, sports, or other obligations you currently have. Most importantly, you want to be sure that you can afford to join. If you have the opportunity to talk to any current members or former sorority members about what sorority life is like, take it. They can provide you with insider knowledge about life in the house, time commitments, and expectations. If you don’t or can’t speak to anyone, scour the websites of each of your school’s houses to learn a little more about them.
Once you’ve decided that you want to go through with recruitment, you’ll have to register. Find out when registration opens and what information you have to provide. You may be required to compile a resume for the houses to look over and provide photos or transcripts.
Additionally, be sure to take some time to stay ahead on any assignments and pick out some outfits ahead of time for rush week, as each day will have a different theme or dress code.
Take care of yourself.
Sorority recruitment can be stressful, but it should be fun! Take the time to take care of yourself and guard your own physical and mental health. Be sure to hit the sack early and get plenty of sleep (7-9 hours!). Eat healthy foods (fruits and vegetables are your friends), bring snacks with you if you need them, and drink lots of water. Finally, find time to do the things that you enjoy doing whether that includes going to the gym, reading, watching Netflix, or spending time with friends.
Ask plenty of questions.
Treat sorority recruitment like you would a job interview. You want to make sure that the house you join will be a good fit for you! The sisters are bound to have plenty of questions for you, but don’t be afraid to ask them some, too. Prepare a list of potential questions you might like to ask or a list of things you want to know about the girls or the house. Having some things in mind beforehand will help to keep the conversation going. Remember that the more you learn about each other, the better. Try to stay positive throughout the process – remember that you want this to be your home.
Keep an open mind.
You may already have some preconceived notions about each of the sororities on your campus. If that’s the case, throw anything you think you know out the window and keep an open mind about the girls that you meet, especially that first day. As the days go on, you will visit fewer houses and spend more and more time with the girls. You’ll need to prioritize which of the houses you are most interested in returning to, so consider which houses you felt most comfortable in. Where did you have the most fun? Where were you happiest spending your time? Could you see yourself spending time with these girls for the next few years? Do you have much in common? The more open you are, the more likely you are to find the perfect fit. Remember that some of the girls you meet may end up surprising you, and you might find your home in the least likely of places.
Don’t forget to have fun!
No matter what happens during sorority recruitment, it’s bound to be an experience you’ll never forget.