How does does recruitment work?
Each year sororities increase their membership through a mutual selection process called recruitment. It is intended for you and the sorority women to meet and get to know each other as will as for you to learn more about each sorority and their values, traditions, philanthropies and programing. Recruitment practices vary from campus to campus. You should attend any recruitment information sessions, if they are available, or visit the Panhellenic office on your campus to find out the specifics of how your campus's recruitment process is set up.
Am I required to have recommendations?
Some, but not all, NPC groups require references or letters of recommendation. It is up to the sorority members to find a recommendation for you. However, obtaining your own recommendations gives you the following advantages:
1. A friend or acquaintance is more familiar with you and the recommendation will be more personal;
2. This way you know you have obtained a recommendation for the sorority because you are not guaranteed a reference if you leave it to the local reference chairwomen and their committees.
The local reference chairwomen want potential new members from Jackson Metro Area, to pledge their sororities. Making sure you are registered with Jackson Area Alumnae JAAPA ensures they are aware of your interest in recruitment. Do not be afraid to publicize that you will be entering formal recruitment. It is a goal of all sorority women to keep the “Greek system” strong. Alumnae that you may know casually or have lost touch with will usually be thrilled to help. Just ask!!!
Will my membership force my grades to suffer?
Sorority women take their grades very seriously. Scholarship is always a focus in chapter goal setting, and the women are always striving to have the highest GPA on campus. A certain GPA is required to remain a member in good standing and to maintain chapter and campus leadership positions.
What do I wear?
This is the most important question to most participants of recruitment!! Each college will provide you with guidelines specific to each day of parties. Ask your recruitment counselor or college Panhellenic representative for clarification. Many campuses will stage a “fashion show” to provide further understanding. Some will have the information posted on a recruitment website. You should receive this information from the college Panhellenic as soon as you register with them. This is another advantage of early registration.
HINT: Recruitment is not a perfect system, and the women will have very little time to get to know you. Therefore, it is suggested that you dress as you would for a school, religious, or family party, not as you would if you were going out with your friends. The recruitment process can be compared to an interview, except the interview is being conducted two ways. Any distracting clothing and jewelry could move the focus from you to these items.
What will my financial obligations be?
This is a parent’s favorite question. Dues vary by university and sorority. Typically, the first semester includes new member and initiation fees along with regular dues and is therefore the most expensive semester. Your college Panhellenic should have more specific information. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. It is well within your rights to determine what your financial obligations will be.
Why are girls I have talked to before, now only nodding and smiling at me?
Sorority members are not being rude or unfriendly; they are protecting the ideal of a fair formal recruitment. Every College Panhellenic has “silence” rules that restrict members from speaking with potential new members outside the recruitment parties. Women that you have known for years, even alumnae, are under strict guidelines, particularly during the week of formal recruitment.
What is a legacy? If I’m not a legacy will it hurt my recruitment chances?
A legacy is usually defined as the sister, daughter, granddaughter, or great-granddaughter of an initiated member of a sorority. Being a legacy does not guarantee placement in the particular legacies sorority. Not being affiliated with an N.P.C. sorority will not impact your recruitment.
Why pledge now, as a freshman?
There are many advantages to pledge as soon as your first semester:
1. Sororities tend to favor freshman because they can maintain their membership for four or more years. Freshmen have an advantage over upperclassmen on most campuses. There are some campuses that have a strict quota placed on the number of sophomores and juniors that can be accept as new members.
2. The sorority house gives you a home away from home. Your sorority sisters can be a surrogate family or support network. You will have the privilege of this support network as you adjust to experiencing college life for the first time.
3. Sororities provide a strong academic program for their new members. An officer responsible for your academic well-being typically oversees study hours. You will most likely gain instant access to upperclassmen in your major. In addition, if you are struggling with a course, you are likely to find sorority members who can help.
What if I am an upperclassman? Should I still participate in recruitment?
Absolutely. Although freshman will have a slight advantage, upperclassmen have a proven college scholastic record and organization participation. This is important to chapters ensuring their scholastic standing.
Should I be afraid that I will be mistreated (hazed) as a new member in a sorority?
No. Unfortunately, Greek members are portrayed very negatively in the media and in Hollywood today. The image of an exclusive party culture is exploited. Philanthropic, academic, and personal development activities are often overlooked. Greek members are more likely to have better GPA’S and act in leadership roles in their communities and college campuses. Greek life departments continue to support programs that educate young men and women on the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, as well as, date rape and other important issues.
All NPC groups and universities have adopted a “no tolerance” approach to hazing violations. Abuse of any sorority member is immediately confronted, and the party involved is often stripped of their membership. Groups that frequently break the no-hazing policy are forced to remove their chapter from campus. NPC sororities adopted this strict policy many years before the heightened attention to it, and they have lead the rest of the Greek community in this direction.
How can I get any other questions I might have answered?
E-mail any questions to Jackson Area Alumnae Panhellenic Association J.A.A.P.A.