As a current university sorority member and former Panhellenic Recruitment Counselor, I answered common questions rushees have about the recruitment process and what to expect. Get ready to be schooled in the art of discovering your whole new group of sisters and future bridesmaids.
WHAT TO TALK ABOUT:
It’s inevitable: you will feel like a repetitive Chatty Kathy during the rush process. Conversation is the backbone of sorority recruitment. Mockingly named “girl flirting,” your days will feel like endless discussions of your major and hobbies, but it’s the best way for a house to learn a lot about you in a short period of time.
- You. Think of things about yourself to talk about that will make you stand out in their minds. Just make sure they are true (they will probably catch on that you haven’t won a Nobel Prize or that your parents aren’t best friends with Beyonce and Jay Z).
-Your passion. Telling them about your passions is the easiest way to make you both feel more comfortable while also proving what unique thing you will bring to their organization. Yes, they do want to know if you have a passion for Irish dance or plan to find the first cure for cancer. It will help them remember you after a long day of random faces and names.
-Avoid the 3 B’s. Stay away from the forbidden three B’s: boys, booze and bucks. Don’t brag about your crazy parties, how much money your parents have or the guys you date. These are not things you want them judging you on, and frankly, they make you sound ultra trashy.
If you don’t connect with the first girl you talk to at a house, no worries. You will talk to about five girls each time so you can get a better sense of the group as a whole. If none of the girls you talk to appeal to you in any way, then it’s clear that their chapter is not where you belong.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR:
Many sororities adopt the motto “not four years but for life,” meaning this organization will forever be something you are associated with. The idea is so cheesy, but so true. Think really carefully about what types of girls you want to spend all your time with and if you want their reputation, even in the post-grad world. Probably not the promiscuous airheads, huh?
-Don’t Be Shallow. Many girls will be picking sororities based on physical appearance, money and other shallow factors. This is not what you want to do. You deserve to be surrounded by people who you get along with and can have a conversation with on a deeper level than clothes and shoes. There is no better feeling than connecting with a girl about art or music, family similarities or a shared love of travel.
-Charity. Look for a sorority with charitable interests in common with yours. You will be adopting a charity to support for four years, so make sure it’s something you are passionate about and can stand behind by giving both time and money.
-Alumna, Intelligence & Price. Other things to look for in a chapter are a strong alumna network, good GPAs and affordable dues prices. Do not be afraid to ask tough, serious questions! There needs to be a deeper benefit to a sorority so that you are getting your money’s worth.
-Social Life. Of course, a huge aspect of sorority life is the social prospects. While many chapters will never openly discuss the more shady party matters, you will get a sense of their approved social activities. Chances are, most of the sororities will have plenty of great, cheesy themed events to attend (my sorority once did “Nurses and Ninjas” and of course, there’s the ever popular Western, Toga and Disney themed events) and a plethora of opportunities to hang out with fraternity guys. A social life is a given in most Greek life situations, so don’t focus too heavily on it during recruitment.
If possible, keep several sororities you liked in mind. You may not get asked to return to your first choice, so having solid backups will help you avoid complete heartbreak. Tears will be abundant during rush, so try to be strong and think clearly. You will be much better off for it and won’t look bat shit crazy in the process.
MY SORORITY DOS & DON’TS
DO: Be gracious! Please, thank you’s and other basic manners will be appreciated. A smile, no matter how forced, will get you a long way.
DO: Appear interested even if you are exhausted, bored or in pain. Girls in a chapter feel the same way yet are expected to show respect and kindness to everyone.
DO: Keep a really, really open mind. You may already know which house you think you want, but every group deserves your respect. They may surprise you and at the very least help you realize what you really are looking for in a sorority.
DO: Attend events at every house. Some recruitment systems require you attend all, but if given the option, do it any way. You need to see differences to know what’s a good fit for you.
DON’T: Gossip about other chapters. Even if a fellow rushee or a girl at a house is talking bad about another sorority to you, don’t engage. You don’t want to ruin your chances by coming off as catty.
DON’T: Attend any pre-rush parties. So tempting, we know, but they can cause major issues for you, even to the point of being ineligible for rush altogether. A moment of fun is not worth missing out on the entire experience.
DON’T: Pick a group based on what your friends are doing. You are very different from your friend or roommate and may have different needs from an organization. If you end up in a different house, it does not mean you have to sever your friendship.
DON’T: Completely discount a group. If you’re asked back to a chapter and have no clue why, it means they saw something in you. You are never forced to accept a bid from a group, so you have nothing to lose by simply attending an event they invite you to for the sake of politeness.
*Click here to read our Sorority Fashion Tips!