About three years ago I made one of the best decisions that I could have during my college years, go through recruitment. I know Greek Life isn’t for everyone, but it is definitely worth at least looking into. In high school I never would have thought of myself as a “sorority girl” and no one else in my family had ever joined one, so the whole idea of recruitment and sisterhood was all new to me.
Senior year of high school I decided to just give it a go after I had gotten an email about signing up for recruitment from the university I was planning on going to. And let me tell you, I don’t regret a single thing about it.
Recruitment can be exciting and scary all at once, take it from someone who knew nothing about it beforehand, I had no idea what to expect, but in one respect, that was a blessing for me because I went in with no pre-conceptions about what was going to happen. Of course, I did my research and watched hours of YouTube videos about other girl’s experiences, but I still wasn’t sure exactly what to expect.
If I could tell my college freshman self one thing, it would be don’t over think it. By that I mean don’t stress too much going into it. I think the biggest misunderstanding about recruitment is that you’re going to go into a room with a bunch of girls who are all alike and looking for one specific girl and so, those girls are judging you. Hard.
In reality, yes the girls recruiting you are judging you in a sense, but really, they’re getting to know you. They’re not judging you based on what you’re wearing or how perfect your makeup is. They’re looking at your character, who you are as a person. That’s what makes the sisterhood so strong, not that every girl has perfectly styled outfits but rather that they all have the same values and other characteristics in common.
The second thing I think everyone should know about recruitment is when you know, you know. When I first went through, the very first organization I visited the very first night was an amazing experience. At first, I tried to tell myself that it was just because it was my first round and that I needed to keep an open mind with the others, which of course that night I did, but surprise, surprise, 3 days later that first group of girls I met would later become my sisters, one of those girls I talked to even became my big!
Definitely keep an open mind going into recruitment and during the process, if you’re not completely sold on one organization the first night, maybe the next night you’ll meet someone who will make you fall in love with it. However, sometimes when you know, you know. Trust the process and trust your gut.
Lastly, just be yourself, don’t stress. Really, don’t pretend to be someone you’re not. If you do pretend just to have a couple of girls like you, you’re not being true to yourself. Find girls and a group that you have a real connection with, values you share, hobbies you both love, if you do this, the group you run home to will truly become your home.
LEADERSHIP AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT
My sorority brought me more than just a group of girls to hang out with. It gave me a chance to grow into the young woman I am today, someone I can be proud of. Throughout my time in college, I have had the chance to serve as a director for my chapter three different times, all very different positions. Being given the opportunity and trust from my sisters to plan fundraisers, retreats, and even formal has helped me grow tremendously.
Skills I believe that I have acquired from these positions include public speaking skills, time management, professional communication (I think of this as being able to talk on the phone or via email with businesses), and a number of other skills.
Without the chance to flourish within my chapter I feel as though I would just be going to and from class and never prospering into someone who can successfully act as a professional adult.
Being a part of a sorority also means a chance to network, one thing that I truly believe all sorority women should take advantage of more! Almost every position I have gotten within my university and around the community has come from me knowing someone who was either in my chapter or organization. The current internship I hold was recommended by an alum sister who now works for that organization, my on-campus job was recommended to me by my big’s best friend who is an alum, and that on-campus job, yeah, my boss was an alum from my own chapter! Because I used those who were around me to grow professionally, I can say my sorority experience benefited me tremendously.
Finally, the part most people are excited about, the lasting friendships that are built. My best friends I met through my sorority. Now, I know what a lot of people say “you have friends because you pay for them” and that is not true! The money that goes into sorority life goes to programming and other budgetary needs to stay running. Yes, we all pay money to the same organization, but it’s not so that everyone else will be friends with me, it’s so that my friends and I can go do fun stuff together! My dues could be paying for a sisterhood movie night, it would be no different if my friends and I went to the movies together!
The two closest people I have been in my sorority are pretty basic, my big and littles. I fell in love with my big that first night I talked with her during recruitment and being able to run home to her was the best feeling ever! And even though she graduated almost three years ago, we still talk every day and try to see each other at least once or twice a year!
Taking a little is another great experience during your years in a sorority. Being able to be a mentor to someone is one of the best feelings in the world. You may not always be best friends with your little and that’s okay. My first little and I barely talk, but when she needs me as a mentor I will be there. My second little and I are crazy close! We talk almost every day, or try to, we have craft nights, Chick-fil-A runs, and are always there to vent to one another. No matter the relationship you have with your little or any of your sisters in general, those bonds are for a lifetime.
Whether you know anything about Greek Life or not, recruitment is something to at least look into. There are so many wonderful experiences you’ll get and the lessons you can learn are for a lifetime. If you’re ever on the fence about going through recruitment reach out to someone, you never know how one experience from someone can impact your college life.