I have been getting some emails about Rush and how to best prepare for it etc… So I am going to do a couple posts about What exactly Rush is, how to prepare for it and how to act during Rush! I have gathered together a couple friends who are going to help me with this. All are either sorority alumni (like me), current members or Recruitment Chairs. Some of you might not know but Recruitment Chairs and current members are not allowed to have contact with PNMs (potential new members) so all these tips will remain anonymous. I will only put the state from where they rushed to give you some sort of idea as to who/where they are coming from.
*disclaimer: this is NOT personal experiences of mine. Everything written does not apply to my alma mater or my sorority*
So let’s start this off!
1) What is Rush?
Also called Formal Recruitment, Rush is a series of social events that allow potential new members (PNMs) to meet with current sorority members. The goal of these events is for the PNMs to see which chapter they believe they would fit best in and for the current members to determine if the PNMs would fit with their chapter. At the end of Rush, which depending on the school can usually last from 4-7 days (some last multiple weeks), the sororities offer bids to PNMs who they believe are the best fit for their chapters.
2) What are Letters of Recommendation?
Letters of Rec serve as a formal introduction of the PNM to the chapter. The letters help the chapters become better acquainted with the PNMs before the formal recruitment process begins. They must be written by an ALUMNA member of the sorority you send the letter to. These letters are sent directly to the chapter house not through the Greek Life office of your university. While Letters of Rec are usually “not required” they actually usually actually are. If a PNM does not have a Letter if Rec it is an easy way for sororities to cut you right off the bat. That said, it is usually easy to get a Letter of Rec. Most chapters have an alumna club in your city. It is easy to contact them and set up a meeting with an alumna. Also, this is a great way to begin networking. You probably know more sorority alums than you think. Ask teachers, friends’ mothers, your mother’s friend & work colleagues. You want Letters of Rec for each sorority at your University. It doesn’t matter if you think you might not want to accept a bid from that house you still want to get a Letter of Rec for them.
3) What is a Legacy?
A legacy is a PNM who has a relative who has pledged a sorority. If your mother/grandmother/sister/aunt/cousin has pledged Chi Omega you are a legacy in Chi Omega but not for Gamma Phi. Legacies are one of those things where if you do not know what it is you are probably not one, but there are some people who do not know if they are or not.
4) How do I apply for Rush?
You need to visit your Universitiy’s Greek Life website. There will be something on their to give you guidance on how to apply, pay your fees, and where to send your packet.
5) Do I really need pictures for Rush?
YES! Do NOT NOT NOT use facebook photos (or anything of the like). You want the sororities to have beautiful photos (multiple, around 3-5) of you sent directly to their house (along with those Letters of Rec…) so they can see you when they are reading your resume and answers! If you apply online the chapters usually only get a black and white photo of you that can be of less than stellar quality.
Use this table to get your stuff together. Fill it in so you can keep yourself organized! The color and philanthropy you might need to search online but trust me they come in handy!
If you have not started finding Rec Letter writers or taken your pictures yet start NOW. You do NOT want to be one of the last people getting everything in. Your goal should be to have everything in (through greek life and to the chapter houses) by Augsut 1st!
The next rush post will be on how to make a good first UNSEEN impression! Think Rush resumes, pictures, Letters etc. Anything and everything that might be sent to the chapters before you arrive on their doorstep.
States contributing to this post: Alabama, North Carolina, Illinois, Texas and Florida
Let me know if you have any questions!