Unprecedented Numbers Turn Out for Sorority Rush


Rush may initially ap­pear to be a convoluted and twisted system, but Sorority Recruitment has actually evolved into a high-tech and fair method by which sororities choose their members.

Recruitment is a pro­cess of mutual selection. Governing over the sorori­ties and the Recruitment process is the Panhellenic Association, which sets the criteria that must be met in order to enter Recruitment. Applicants must have no more than one probation­ary period on record and no guilty convictions from the Student Con­duct Board. Also, a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or above is required; Gamma Phi Beta demands a 2.7.

Panhellenic Association Presi­dent Hilary Nicholson explained the Recruitment process in layman’s terms. This year, twenty-nine well-trained and temporarily disaffiliat­ed Recruitment Counselors (RCs), comprised of approximately ten sisters from each house, split up the roughly 306 girls registered. These potential new members (PNMs) were shuffled accordingly, so as to make sure no RC knew any PNM personally (so no slighted opinions could be made). RCs are more than just group leaders, however; they act as a liaison between Greek Life and the PNMs. They are trained to provide advice, counseling and most anything else that the PNMs may need.

After an informational meet­ing on Monday September 5, the fun began on Thursday. RC groups went in timed waves to parties at each of the three Sorority houses: Delta Delta Delta, Gamma Phi Beta and Kappa Kappa Gamma

Each party was a twenty minute meet-and-greet in which sorority members and PNMs got to know each other.

Friday’s festivities didn’t stray too far from Thursday’s – maybe with the excep­tion of a slide show – until after the parties. With two successful rounds over and done, each PNM returned to the Hall of Presi­dents (HOP) to fill out a preference card with her top two preferences. Each soror­ity also listed certain PNMs they had met and liked, to be invited back to the house Saturday morning for a forty-five minute meeting and tour.

Saturday’s events, unlike the previous two twenty-minute meetings (which were done in groups) were done on an individ­ual basis. The preferences of the sororities and PNMs were then entered into a com­puter system, the ICS, which matched the PNMs to their preferred houses, and vice versa. After the Saturday meeting, prefer­ence cards were done again and plugged into the ICS.

Those consequently matched-up are invited back for an hour-long party on Sunday. Each PNM is paired with a cur­rent sister of the sorority to which they were invited, and the hour is spent meet­ing sisters and chatting about interests: es­sentially getting to know each other and the sorority better.

If a PNM’s preferences and those en­tered by the sororities do not match up, and the PNM has not waived her right to a bid, then the presidents of all three sororities and representatives from the Panhellenic Association meet to discuss each PNM. If a president or representative remembers meeting a PNM, or remem­bers the impact she made on certain sis­ters, then she may volunteer to invite that PNM back to that specific sorority. How­ever, if consensus cannot be reached, the PNM will be invited back to a randomly selected sorority.

After this deliberation, the quota for each sorority (decided by Panhellenic by how many girls rush) will be filled, and PNMs met with their RCs on Monday to receive their bids. In the end, 218 bids were extended. Growing chapter sizes reiterate that sorority life is still going strong.

RC and junior Kate Thomson explains her role helping the PNMs and what she learned from sorority rush.

“Being a Recruitment Counselor was a great experience,” Thomson said. “It was difficult to disaffiliate and not be able to represent my sorority, but also incredibly rewarding to embrace a ‘go greek’ attitude and help girls through a stressful process. I got to know the girls in my group really well over just four days and became emo­tionally tied to what happened to them and where they got invited back. It was really rewarding to watch girls go through the process and be thrilled with the result and difficult to see great girls be disap­pointed. Overall, I gained so much re­spect for the Colgate Panhellenic Council and the insane amount of work that they did to make sure that recruitment was a successful event.”

Many students reflected on making the choice whether or not to rush and the importance of that decision.

“After my first year at Colgate, I didn’t think joining a sorority would have a great impact on my college experience,” sopho­more Catherine Stecyk said. “Now, however, after just a few days spent with my new sisters at Gamma Phi Beta, I’ve come to realize just how fulfilling my participation in sorority life can and will be.”

Clearly, an incredible amount of work was put into Recruitment by everyone in­volved, including RCs, sisters, the Pan­hellenic Association and PNMs. All have done their best to ensure fairness so that recruitment went as smoothly as possible.

Contact Peter Truwit at [email protected].