One of the many questions facing incoming and returning women as the summer nears its end is have you thought about going through sorority recruitment? Some girls may jump in ready to start out on a new experience either for the first time in college or for something new as a returning student. Whether you are an incoming freshmen or a returning student, knowing what to expect throughout the week of sorority recruitment will help to ease your nerves and be confident in whatever happens on bid day.
Before I give you advice on what to expect throughout the week of panhellenic recruitment, I want you to know why I encourage everyone to think about signing up for sorority recruitment. One of the best decisions that I made coming into U of L was to sign up for sorority recruitment. To those of you who are uncertain, I encourage you to take a chance and just maybe, you will not only open yourself up to many opportunities during your college career, but also discover the meaning of best friends and sisterhood.
The four days of recruitment are divided into themes for each day: finance night, philanthropy night, skit night and preference night. On the first day, finance night, expect to meet a lot of people very quickly. Don’t be intimidated by the conversations, because chances are the sorority women you are talking to are nervous as well. Philanthropy night is centered on each house’s individual philanthropy, which is at the heart of the entire greek community. On skit night, each house will put on a short skit showing the personality of their chapter and what they are truly all about. Don’t be afraid to get into it and have fun.
On preference night, you will find a different atmosphere than the rest of the week. This night is where each house gives you a glimpse of their sisterhood and why they want you to be a part of it. You will hear girls say how they have found a home in their chapter. When they say this to you, they are not reciting from a script. They sincerely have found a home in the friendship of their sisters and the community of greek life.
Listen to your Gammi Chis. These girls are your recruitment counselors throughout the week and will be with you every step of the way. You can talk to them about anything and about every house. They will give unbiased advice. They took this position because they want to help you have fun, feel comfortable, and find a chapter that you can call home.
It doesn’t matter what letters these girls belong to on bid day because they all have something in common: they are there for you throughout the process of recruitment.
When you sign up for recruitment, there will be guidelines on what you should wear each day. For example, black, cocktail dresses for preference night are encouraged. Follow the guidelines, but do not be afraid to be unique and show your personal style.
Exude confidence and stand out. With so many girls going through recruitment, it can be hard for the women inside to remember everyone’s name and something special about them. It is up to you to make yourself memorable and make the women on the inside want to get to know you more personally. It is important to be yourself, so that when you have that memorable conversation at one of the houses, it is a real connection with the women of that chapter.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions, no matter how many you have to ask. It’s understandable to be curious or confused. Ask the women you are talking to questions such as, “What made you want to go greek?” and “What would you ask in recruitment if you could do it again?” The more questions you ask the more at ease you will feel at a house. The women on the inside will be completely honest with you and want you to end up at the right house for you.
Like so many of you, I did not know what to expect throughout the week of panhellenic sorority recruitment. The best advice is to be flexible and embrace the uncertainty of each day. Inevitably, a schedule will be lost or incorrect, but it will work out. Going into each day with an open mind about each of the sorority houses will only make each day fun and help calm your nerves.
When you start to feel overwhelmed or that maybe sorority recruitment was a bad idea, don’t give up just yet. At the time of recruitment, you may not see the meaning to the madness, but I promise you, one day you will see it. And on that day, you will happy you stayed throughout the week.
The best advice that someone gave me was to imagine yourself in sweatpants watching a fun movie cuddled up on the couch of the sorority house with the girls you are talking to throughout the week. Wherever you end up on bid day, know that the girls wearing the letters that are soon to be yours as well saw the qualities in you that they value and embody. They are genuinely excited and thrilled when you come running with your bid. This bid card is the end of recruitment, but it is only the beginning of your life as part of a sisterhood.
Photo by Andrew Nathan/The Louisville Cardinal