Let’s Talk about the week of Recruitment
It will be loonnnng. Long days and long hours. You will be exhausted. You will probably want to just wear your sweatpants all day long. But it WILL give back to you so so so much, and it is so worth the frustrations and long days. Just keep an open mind, stay excited about recruitment and continue to stay true to yourself. Here’s a summary of the week and the rounds similar to how I did it and how it is at other schools.
The only difference is that at Southern schools (or larger schools), the first day will be house tours, which is something that our campus didn’t do.
You will be with a girl for tops 20 minutes, and honestly you probably won’t talk about anything other than topics of small talk. Don’t be surprised if you only get to talk about where you are from or your major. Questions will be very surface level simply because of time, so don't worry about trying to answer with any elaborate answers.
However, even though the conversations are short, don’t be worried! It’s quick, but it’s just so chapters can see a taste of you! Just stay engaged with the girl who you’re talking to!
Round One for me was the Philanthropy Round, which honestly only hit home for me when I did Recruitment on the other side (as a recruiting sister). It’s difficult to connect with philanthropies sometimes if you don’t have a direct connection with the charity that the chapter you’re talking to is partnered with! However, I would definitely try to approach each philanthropy of each chapter with an open mind, and you never know, a cause might become near and dear to your heart! Girls who are talking to you from each chapter will tell you all about their chapter's partner organization and cause (our cause is Building Strong Girls and our partner organization is Girls on the Run!) and what they host each year for their philanthropy event (We’re hosting a new event this year, called Moonball!).You’ll probably be asked if you have ever done any volunteer service, or if you have any causes that are close to your heart! It just so happened that when I rushed and saw Gamma Phi, I clicked with their philanthropy because I’m a Girls on the Run alum! However, don’t worry if a chapter’s cause doesn’t click with you, you’ll learn more and more about each chapter as recruitment continues. This round will also probably lead to a conversation about what you did in high school outside of your classes and what you’re involved with on campus (or if it’s before the semester begins, what you plan to be involved with on campus!). Be honest, this isn’t really a time to fluff your resume. If you have no clue about what you want to be involved with, that’s so, so, so okay! Just be honest! Being part of a sorority allows you to really get involved with community service and volunteering.
At some schools, this used to be Skit Night, which has been stopped nationwide due to Panhell rules, but at other schools it is called Development Day or Sisterhood Day! I love this round cause this is the day you get to watch each chapter’s recruitment video and see their sisterhood. It’s a really nice way to see the sisterhood in each chapter, which I loved. You’ll probably watch a video in each chapter’s round and you’ll get to hear more about the relationships that sisters build in each chapter! This round is longer than the last one, so you’ll get a better chance to talk to the sisters of each chapter. You’ll probably cover things like why you’re choosing to go through recruitment, what you want from a sorority and you’ll get a chance to ask questions too! This is the last round before preference, so start thinking long and hard about how you feel about each chapter you visit.
This is the last night of recruitment, and by far the most emotional and close-knit. It’ll be much more intimate than any other night and you’ll feel the difference. You’ll go to between 1 and 3 houses (on our campus, most girls go to two) and you’ll hear more about the deeper aspects of each chapter and you’ll see a piece of their open ritual, probably a song that means something to the chapter. This is the longest round, the last round, and probably the most important round. This is your last chance to talk to each chapter and their last chance to talk to you before you make your choices. Make yourself comfortable, and be honest with the women around you. The reason this chapter asked you to come to their preference night ceremony is because they can see you in their house, but you need to think about if you can see them in your life! Look at the girls who are sitting in the room with you, and ask yourself if you could be sisters with them, both the girls already in the chapter and the girls who are going through recruitment with you.
When it comes down to ranking at the end of the night, think about which chapters made you feel certain ways. If there’s a chapter that you can’t imagine yourself NOT joining, put that one first, and follow what your gut says. My only tip is to maximize your options, so rank all the sororities you visited on Pref Night, not just your favorite. This can actually diminish your chances of getting a bid anywhere, so keep an open mind about every chapter and just rank them as you see fit.
Some things to remember during Recruitment:
1) The rounds are VERY LOUD, so feel free to ask someone to repeat themselves- it’s better that you hear them and make an effort to talk than just let the conversation go!
2) Bring a notebook in your bag and just write down what you’re thinking in between rounds so you can have fresh thoughts in your mind written down when you go to rank houses!
3) EVERYONE IS NERVOUS. I can’t say that enough. If something embarrassing happens and you’re all okay, laugh it off and move on. Everyone in the room has been through recruitment before or is going through with you and understands how nerve wracking it can be.
4) Keep drinking. You’ll either be provided water in each house or between rounds, and after getting a sore throat my second day of recruitment, definitely try to carry around water if you can, or chug some when you get back to your room.
5) You are still loved and worth it and wonderful even if you get dropped from a house during recruitment. You will find your home, or you will find out that Greek life might not be for you at that moment. It’s okay. I was rejected by my top two picks on my first afternoon of recruitment and if it wasn’t for that, I never would have found my home in Gamma Phi!
6) Stay positive!
7) Be open minded!
8) Be yourself!
9) Those three tips above are SO key to going through recruitment. It’s so difficult to go through recruitment if you get down on yourself or the people around you or if you’re trying to be someone you’re not. Just go with the flow and things will work out, I promise.
10) However stressful recruitment is, it’s worth it in the end. Whether or not you join a chapter and whether or not you joined the chapter you thought you would at the beginning of recruitment, I promise it’s worth it. You will find a family, or at the very least you will make friends. It’s a ton of fun once you look back on it, and if you end up finding a chapter that makes your heart happy, you’ll know it was worth it.
I promise it will be fun and a joy and worth every tear shed and every shred of stress felt.
I hope I cleared up any confusions about recruitment and I hope that I helped ease some nerves! Always feel free to comment questions or email me with thoughts! That’s what I’m here for.
Lots of love and hugs from Hotlanta,