2013 Sorority Classes Burst at the Seams

2013 Sorority Classes Burst at the Seams

A clamor of honking horns on Monday evening signaled the end of Colgate’s six-day long Panhellenic recruitment, which culminated with the traditional celebratory bid day. Bid distribution was delayed slightly on Monday evening because of a problem with bid matching within the computer system, but all bids were handed out appropriately by the end of the night.

The 2010 Recruitment process was a shaky one due to problems with the computer system and minor violations of the Panhellenic Rules of Formal Recruitment, but to the surprise of many, it was also an all-inclusive one.

Although the Potential New Members (PNMs) were told otherwise during the mandatory orientation session, each one of the 274 potential new members (PNMs), a noticeable jump in numbers from years past, involved in the recruitment process this year received an invitation of membership from one of Colgate’s three recognized sororities: Kappa Kappa Gamma (Kappa), Gamma Phi Beta (Gamma Phi) and Delta Delta Delta (Tri Delta).

“There has been a longstanding policy devised by the trustees which states that every woman who enters the process will receive a bid unless she self-removes,” President of the Panhellenic Executive Board and senior Jocelyn Hinman said. “Every girl this year did receive a bid unless she removed herself, her GPA was below the chapter requirement or there was a standards issue.”

Because of the recent enforcement of this rule, the three sororities of Colgate have seen a marked jump in the size of their new member classes. Kappa, Gamma Phi and Tri Delta welcomed pledge classes of 65, 66 and 54 women, respectively.

“I’m worried [my sorority] isn’t going to be as close-knit of a community as it could be,” sophomore Jacky Baughman said. “I think only having three sororities on campus might detract from the Greek experience because it’s clear that the interest in Greek Life is so high.”

Baughman’s comments are echoed by representatives of the Panhellenic executive board.

“Not only is it difficult to keep track of a class of 70 women, it’s also hard to get to know all of the new members, and it is difficult for all of them to get to know each other,” Hinman said.

In a recent interview with the Maroon-News, the newly appointed President Dr. Jeffrey Herbst complimented Colgate Greek Life on its aspirations, but when questioned about the hot topic of the possibility of another sorority on camps, he commented that “those are discussions we are going to have at some point.”

After the four-year suspension given to Kappa Alpha Theta (Theta) in 2008 because of alcohol violations related to hazing, Colgate is now left with three nationally recognized sororities amidst an incredibly high demand among women on campus to be part of Greek Life.

However, violations to Pahellenic Council Rules in 2010 occurred even before bids came in. Although none of the violations resulted in suspension of a sorority, “all were dealt with accordingly,” Hinman said, “and the rules of Panhellenic were made much clearer to the women participating in Recruitment, both sorority members and potential new members.”

The Panhellenic Council claimed it was not at liberty to discuss the violations or the identity of the violators.

In the midst of talk of the necessity of an additional sorority, the topic of “dirty rush” is being discussed heavily on campus. The issue spans Greek Life as a whole and is not just restricted to the women on campus.

In addition to stipulations that prohibit events “with the explicit or implicit intent to recruit unaffiliated women,” the Panhellenic rules of Recruitment strictly prohibit sorority member and PNM interactions at the Greek houses or the PNMs places of residence from August 1 until the end of recruitment.

Despite these provisions, “dirty rush” is on the minds of many members of the student body.

“I’d like to think the process of recruitment isn’t already over before it starts,” Baughman said.