Keeping an Open Mind
Friday, August 09, 2013
The decision to participate in recruitment is personal and so is the decision to join a specific sorority chapter. The formal recruitment process is designed to give you the opportunity to meet women from every sorority chapter on your campus so that you can make informed decisions. You might have ideas before recruitment about which chapters you like and you might not — either way, it’s important to keep an open mind and know that your opinions might change during the recruitment process.
You might know sorority women who are already in chapters before you begin recruitment, especially if you go to a school that has deferred recruitment (meaning it takes place later in the school year). This might make you feel more at ease during the process, but don’t feel like you have to join a specific chapter just because your friends are members. They all went through the recruitment process at some point too, so they understand what you are going through.
You also might have heard rumors about the chapters on your campus, good or bad. Many of these rumors are stereotypes that don’t actually tell you anything about what a chapter is like. All 26 member groups of the National Panhellenic Conference are organizations with years of history and traditions. Some chapters might be different than others, but that doesn’t mean there are any chapters that are better than others. Keep an open mind; you never know which chapters will surprise you during recruitment.
If you do participate in recruitment, you might hear the term legacy. A legacy is someone whose mother, sister or sometimes aunt or grandmother is a member of a particular sorority. Each chapter has different policies about legacies in recruitment, and being a legacy does not necessarily mean you are guaranteed a bid to your legacy chapter. You should not feel pressured to join any chapter just because you are a legacy. Your relatives might have had wonderful experiences with their sorority chapters, and they probably just want you to have the same wonderful experience with your sorority chapter, even if it isn’t your legacy chapter. Sharing a legacy connection can be a special experience, but your family cares more about your being happy than your joining a specific chapter.
Each recruitment experience is unique. Different chapters of the same sorority might have completely different personalities, and each chapter on your campus is probably a little different. The recruitment process is the perfect time to figure out those differences and make your own decision about which chapter you want to join. It may not always turn out the way you expected before recruitment, but if you keep an open mind, you can end up in the home that is right for you.