For the girl concerned about initiation: 1) Sorority Sugar is totally right, initiations are touching, contemplative ceremonies. 2) Should you encounter anything frightening, uncomfortable, etc at ANY time (pledging, initiation, membership), you can always say NO. Joining a Greek org doesn't mean blindly obeying others. A good chapter will want you because you are strong & moral. If they don't want someone who can stand up for what's right, think hard about whether or not you want them.
AMEN and well said!!! not all chapters obey the rules 100% i guess and if anything goes astray a new member should speak up right way. thank you for sharing…….. xoxo ;)
I joined a sorority this year as an upperclassman and was really looking forward to making a lot of new friends and being apart of something on campus. But the only people I'm relatively close to are the girls in my family (we're new so no bigs/littles). Everyone is so nice but I get the feeling all of the girls already have their "groups" established, and I see pictures of my sisters hanging out with each other on Facebook. I'm working on overcoming my slight shyness; do you have any advice?
it does take awhile to form a tight friend group and to connect with lots of sisters. this is true whether your chapter is new or well established. luckily you are close with your “family” and the photos you see on facebook are probably other families socializing too. start with your circle of friends and build out from there! get together more often as a family and then reach out to some other small groups and soon you will be a part of a medium sized group, etc… pull together a larger group for a pre-party or sit together at the next social event or football game. networking between groups via sisters who have connections is KEY.
think of your chapter as a giant web, you reach other sisters via the channels of the web. one girl knows another girl, who knows another girl and quickly you have a friendly set of sisters to hang out with. you have to be willing to make an extra effort in the early days. go out more than you normally would, even if you’re tired or busy with other things. the first year is important for establishing a friendship foundation. later you can relax a little and step back a bit if you want.
soon you will be focusing on a new recruitment and new members. it all goes by so fast! hang in there, give it your all and accept that the journey is what greek life is all about. make the most of it! xoxo ;)
Q: What should I do?
A: there is ALWAYS a cooling off period after the high octane frenzy of recruitment! the excitement of rush could never be sustained for an entire year. after new members pledge, everyone tends to get back to their regular lives. that doesn’t mean sisters don’t love each other, or that the new members are any less important. a few months after bid day, it takes more effort on the part of all the sisters to connect.
i suggest you start making contact with your big ASAP and spend time with other sisters too. text, call, socialize, hang out, do homework together, etc… make sure you attend all the chapter events that you can. if your schedule is so busy that you can’t fully enjoy greek life, then you are paying dues for very little return. you have to make the sorority experience a #1 priority. if you place it at the top of your list ~ the rewards will start to flow to you. but if you put your sisterhood at the bottom of your list, guess what? not much will happen! it’s all up to YOU and what you’d like to get out of greek life. you were LUCKY enough to join your favorite sorority ~ now is the time to go for it 100%! xoxo ;)
hi there!! I just rushed as a sophomore and I could not be happier! I just have one concern - bonding with the freshmen in my pledge class. it seems like they are all getting close really quickly because they live on campus together, eat at the dining halls, get ready to go out together, those kinds of things, and I feel a bit out of the loop. any advice?? thank you! :) xoxo
if you are “out of the loop” with your pledge class, it will be more challenging to connect. the first thing you should do is to look for another older member, or a commuter student to befriend. pair up with the other new members who are not living & eating with the freshman. they probably feel left out too and your friendship would be much appreciated. take the initiative and get to know any and all sisters outside the freshman clique.
another way to bond with your class as a whole is to participate in all class level events, run for office and/or chair a class committee. jump on any activites which will bring you into contact with the younger members. you may not live with the freshman, but you can work and socialize with them within the sorority.
keep in mind that your original new member class does not need to be your only friend group after initiation. your big sister and other upperclassmen may end up being the girls you really click with. go where your heart leads and make as many friends that you can during your collegiate years. xoxo ;)
I'm a new member in my sorority this semester and we haven't been initiated yet, with that being said it's also my first semester at this school so I've been really busy and haven't really bonded with any of the girls yet, and I kind of feel like an outcast. All of the sisters have seemed to make connections with all the other new members and now that my exams are over I'm trying but I feel like it might be too late, I just get the general feeling that they dislike me and I'm not sure what to do
in almost any group of girls, if you don’t participate or actively join in, you may ‘accidentally’ become an outcast. it’s not that the other sisters don’t like you, you just haven’t been around enough to bond with. you miss the inside jokes, the goofy times and the socializing that unites girlfriends. you mentioned that you were quite busy this semester, and it’s wonderful that you were studying, but maybe you didn’t balance your studies with your new social life in the best way.
but a slow start is just that ~ a slow start. you have many, many seasons to come and plenty of time to turn this around. it’s never too late to rededicate yourself to your chapter. first you need to rearrange your schedule to make more time for getting to know your fellow members. there will be lots of NEW opportunities opening up, once you are initiated. you can quickly take steps to get more involved. you get love from your chapter when you give love to your chapter!
to be on the “inside” and to feel well-liked takes effort on your part. sisters don’t fall in love with other sisters they don’t know or never see! your smiling face needs to be attending every meeting, going for smoothies with your pledge class sisters, volunteering for the next fundraiser and more… pick several sisters you are drawn to and make november the month you get “in” with them. start small and build up to the chapter as a whole.
no time like the present to start fresh and put yourself out there. make the rest of this semester and the spring the best it can be as a new initiate!! xoxo ;)
Hey, I love this blog. As president of my sorority, it's always so difficult to hear girls say that no one is reaching out to them. Especially when they aren't reaching out at all. It takes effort from both people to make a bond. A sorority does not mean that you join and are immediately bonded to every person. Of course it's uncomfortable at first. You always address this appropriately and for that, I thank you! <3333
exactly!!! well said. it takes TWO in any type of human relationship ~ romantic, friendship, family, business… both sides need to be interested, involved and active. xoxo ;)
hi, so i was planning on joining tri delta at loyola marymount university and iim about to join with my initiation next week but i feel like its all wrong i feel as though i havent really gotten to know the girls and although i get along with them pretty well i feel as though im just left out. should i drop before i pay the commitment to them?
my answer would be a firm NO you shouldn’t drop!! you don’t have any major conflicts with your sisters and no horrible event has occurred which would cause you to bail out. if you rushed just a few months ago, then you are putting a lot of pressure on developing super close ties in just 3 short months. you would take longer than that to fall madly in love with a new boyfriend. meaningful relationships take TIME!
bid day and your new member period, is just the beginning of a wonderful long term affiliation. you have 4 collegiate years and the rest of your life to be a member. please take the long view in this situation. every year of your membership will be different. you need to give it a chance, get more involved, meet more sisters, give back to your chapter, etc… honestly, you have not even begun to fully experience sorority life.
things change after you are initiated. you will be viewed differently by the chapter. you also need to take some responsibility for feeling “left out” and be more actively involved. make sure you attend every meeting and event. socialize with your sisters and take on a chairmanship. only by jumping in with both feet will you fully experience all tri delta has to offer. you are so close to the “best part” it would really be a shame to quit now. xoxo ;)
Hi! I'm one of 20 new members in a sorority this fall, but I feel as though only the same 10 girls show up to the meetings, required events, socials, etc. It really frustrates me that the girls that never show up to anything either don't talk to anyone when they do show up every now and then. I'm worried this makes our member class look lazy and I'm frustrated that these girls don't try to get to know any of us even though we try very hard to go to all the events and become close.
unfortunately, it’s totally the norm for a percentage of members to do most of the work and “attend” and for a percentage to barely show up at all. this happens in every organization and club. sororities usually instigate a ‘points system’ for requiring and tracking member participation. girls need to be held accountable. there are many mandatory events in greek life, and your sisters need to be either rewarded or punished for their membership actions.
this may sound harsh, but if there is no accountability you end up with your lackadaisical pledge class situation. it becomes demoralizing and dampens the spirit of ALL the members. when half the girls are not bonding, or bothering to partake in chapter activities, it hurts everyone! your chapter needs to get control of this situation ASAP. your sorority sounds small and if this lack of discipline is left unchecked, it can destroy your organization. energetic and enthusiastic new members are vital to the lifeblood of any chapter.
without overstepping, please see if you can ask about your chapter’s policies for attendance. someone in your leadership should be motivating and accounting for all new members. everyone should be held to the standards and requirements of your sorority. i hope they will get a plan together soon. in the meantime keep your spirits up, bond with the other 9 who do care and focus on all the positive things you can do within your sorority. be a shining example of what it means to be a XYZ sister!! xoxo ;)
I rushed as a junior this year and ended up in the bottom sorority at my campus. They have a bad rep for being 'awkward and ugly' and b/c of the rep girls often drop when they see their bid and bidday is not a very happy day. I'm deciding to stay because I feel like this is my last chance to be in a sorority. The pledge class is also very different from me. They're 'wholesome/naive' but I party hard, drink, and sometime do drugs even though im shy. Should I stay/is there a way to change the rep?
i hope you don’t want to change your new chapter’s rep into your lifestyle. going from nerdy to hard partying and doing drugs doesn’t sound like much of an improvement! i’m not a prude, but your personal choices are not empowering, healthy, or productive. if you would like to take the chapter in a positive direction that’s a possibility……
rushing as a junior does offer more limited opportunities, so i applaud you for accepting a bid to a chapter that was not your #1 choice. i am sorry to hear that your sorority is struggling so much, but i don’t think your ‘worldly ways’ are the answer. your sisterhood needs to find an identity and a voice within the greek community. if they are wholesome and quiet that’s OK ~ there is a place for more reserved chapters in the panhellenic. but they also need to be happy, energetic and retain their members. if bid day is sad, and members are always dropping, something is seriously wrong.
soooo if you would like to step up as a leader, make changes and steer your sorority ship in a new direction ~ it can be done! it will take some serious work, but strong leadership can effect change. you will need to be charismatic, creative and full of ideas. your e-board and full membership will need to get on board. pick a new direction that emphasizes your chapter’s strengths and attracts PNMs who are of like mind. there is room for different sorority personalities, so don’t try to remake your sisterhood into something it’s not.
your chapter CAN find it’s niche and be the best of that “style.” maybe that is being the quieter, studious, clean cut sorority with classy gentlewomen as members. that’s wonderful! be the BEST version of that “type” on campus. if the chapter is functioning properly, stable and secure ~ you will have achieved great things! i encourage you to step up and make a difference! xoxo ;)
MANY sororities are actually “fraternities” ~ meaning they are fraternal organizations. they were founded in the 1800s before there even was a word called “sorority”. so they are officially and technically fraternities.
other chapters were founded in more recent times, and they took the name sorority instead. for example ~ chi omega is a fraternity, but gamma phi beta and sigma kappa are sororities! they all serve the same functions and they operate the same way. your friend must have joined a sorority like delta gamma or pi beta phi ~ chapters who also use the term ‘fraternity’ when referring to their organizations. xoxo ;)
Delta Gamma at University of California, Riverside Welcomes their New Member class of 2013!
submitted by: caitlinshmaitlin
S: YES sorority life is a big time commitment! there are lots of meetings, events, socials, volunteering, mandatory requirements and more. i wish you had been fully aware of this before recruitment. it’s a total “lifestyle”. some chapters discourage working even part time if you are in a sorority.
i think a member can work part time (close by) and still juggle all the balls of classes, work and greek life. but in your case being 45 minutes away, plus 2 jobs ~ it is impossible. you have to prioritize! life is about making tough choices. you are in a big bind right now and it will take making some tough decisions to work it out. something has to give. consider these options ~
- you must keep attending classes, so that’s off the table. your course load is what it is.
- if financially feasible, you could cut back to 1 part time job and see if the change would open up the hours you need for greek life. hopefully you could replace the money by working 2 jobs all summer long. see if there is some way for you to shift your employment commitment more to the months when you are away from the sorority. working extra hours during holidays and semester breaks is another idea. also, it depends on if your job(s) is near campus, or 45 minutes away.
- how about moving closer to campus? for your own collegiate happiness, maybe you can live in the dorms or sorority house. once you get to know your sisters, you can be roommates in a nearby apartment. cutting down on your commute gives you more time for chapter life, working and studying. and much less stress!
- i personally think you have your entire life to work, work, work. that doesn’t mean you need to loaf around or get lazy, but if there is any way to get financial assistance to help you get through college it might be worth it. but YOU have to consider greek life and being involved in your university a priority. as a long distance commuter with an strong commitment to work, you are missing out on the collegiate experience. you need to decide what that means to you in the long run.
if, after you read the list of things that are ‘changeable’ and you still can’t switch any of them around ~ then your sorority membership may have to end. you won’t benefit from greek life if you can’t be there to participate. there is not point in paying expensive dues, paying fines for missed mandatory events and struggling to drive almost 2 hours round trip on a sunday evening just to attend a chapter meeting. the FUN comes in being with your sisters on a regular basis, the laughter, the crazy times and just being together as much as possible.
please do some soul searching and see what the next few college years mean to you. how you want them to look and feel? where there is a will there is a way, but choices need to be made. it’s up to YOU! xoxo ;)
I just want to say thank you with the business casual advice, and for having such an amazingly helpful blog. Today was bid day, and I was lucky enough to get a bid from Delta Phi Epsilon, one of my top choices! ΔΦΕ <3
!!!!!!!!!!! CONGRATS !!!!!!!!!! & thank you!
have fun being a happy unicorn! xoxo ;)
hang in there! you may need to play catch up, but that’s preferable to throwing in the towel on your membership. your chapter should make sure you are “up to speed” like all the other girls. speak up and ASK how you become fully integrated in your chapter. don’t be shy about jumping into chapter life.
i would give your sisterhood the benefit of the doubt. everyone is busy and you are a little “outside” the organized system. but with a little extra effort i think you can become happy and satisfied. also, if you are already older than your pledge class, dropping and rushing again will only make you even OLDER! focus on working with your current chapter instead. step up, be more assertive, ask questions, send a few inquiring emails and motivate the right people to get you 100% in order. you CAN make connections and fit in if you figure out who/what/when you need to do! xoxo ;)