Hi! I am wondering if you can tell me anything about recruitment requirements for Alpha Sigma Tau. I am going to be a part-time student next semester and I have been to a few events for AST, because I have to work in order to go to school, I am only able to go to school part-time this semester. I was told I have to be full-time, but I haven't gotten a for sure answer... Any advice?
the standards for NPC chapters require that PNMs be enrolled full time in classes. that usually means 12 credits or more. if there is ANY way you can juggle a flexible job and classes, you could also enjoy the benefits of greek life while you’re a college student. the time goes by so fast, and this is the only opportunity you have to be a collegiate sorority member.
many girls work, take a full class load and participate in greek life. it all depends on how you schedule your time. for example, if you can work a job on the weekends and/or nights, that would leave more time for classes during the day. or work during the day and take classes at night. or a combo of both! you may be just one class away from full time status. with extra thought and effort, i have faith you can make it work. IF you are really interested in going greek, then switching jobs, changing work schedules and adding a class or two ~ is what you need to do. where there’s a will there’s a way.
you have the next 50 years to work full time. you only have 4 years as an undergraduate. i really admire your work ethic, but for this brief period of time, i hope you can enjoy all the benefits of sisterhood and good times as well. your university days are some of the most memorable times of your life! xoxo ;)
most PNMs don’t know many sorority members when they go through rush! PNMs may know a few friends from high school, or some greek girls from classes/sports, but it’s very common to be “new” to the sorority system. even if you’ve met some sorority members this fall semester, once you visit their house, you’ll meet lots more girls you’ve never even seen before. greeks tend to socialize with other greeks, so your opportunities for getting to know them before spring recruitment have been limited. but now’s your chance!
your #1 job during recruitment is to socialize, interview and bond with the sorority members so they do get to know you and you learn about them too. it is THE way to become aquatinted. you do this by being talkative, outgoing, friendly, inquisitive, enthusiastic, charming and genuinely interested in the sisters you speak with. ask questions, soak up the vibes and process the information at each sorority house, so you can make a wise decision about which chapter to join. be your BEST self so the sisters can see all you have to offer them. when you make a match, you will find your new sorority home! i wish you the very best of luck and happiness! xoxo ;)
Q: I was a new member this semester for my sorority, and we had to make the choice for our collegiate chapter to close Bc of issues. I was offered a choice to be initiated or to be released from my bid, I chose to be initiated, so I am an alumna. Now that we have no chapter, all the girls hate each other. People fight constantly. I was close with my sisters, nobody speaks to each other anymore. I’m sad Bc I had no collegiate experience at all and I don’t even have any close sisters that I thought I would. What to do?
A: oh no! this is the worst news on top of the worst news. i wish your sisters could just be friends, even if there isn’t a functioning chapter. is that too much to ask? apparently so… let’s focus on 3 points to make the best of a bad situation!!
- can you salvage two or three good friends out of the college group? if you could rally several girlfriends/sisters out of this mess, maybe you can still fulfill your longing for sisterhood. if a handful of you could start a mini-club and meet for good times, it would be fantastic. rally around your bond of membership, or start something new like a dinner club, craft club, or book club. find something that will bring you together. loose the fighting sisters and target the BEST girls for your little informal group.
- can you connect with alums in your area? are there any possibilities in your surrounding region for alumnae involvement? maybe you can volunteer with recruitment at a nearby campus, help different chapters in your state, work on establishing a colony at another university, or just meet for lunch and sisterhood with other alums. contact your advisors and regional representatives to see what your options are. seek out any activities you can!
- please take the long view! on a positive note, you are a sorority member for LIFE. it seems depressing right now, but one day when you move to a new city after graduation and you don’t know a single person, your alumnae membership will come in very handy. it could be a lifesaver. your sorority connections may help you land your dream job one day, or bring you a new friend when you’re home with small children and really need another mommy to bond with. maybe you can even work with your national organization in some way. or serve in a panhellenic capacity. there are long range greek things that you can do that will lift your spirits and fill the void you are experiencing now. all is not lost!
i recommend you try everything you can to make lemonade out of your lemons. start small, do your sorority research and embrace every little treasure you can. don’t spend any more time with the arguing sisters. also, join some totally NEW clubs as well ~ which will give you a fresh start and launch you in a different direction. focus your vision straight ahead and make your present and your future as bright as possible! xoxo ;)
Q: The executive board of my sorority recently voted me out as VP of Service because they didn’t like the way I was creating service projects or how I was handling my position. They said that complaints from membership were the reason they voted me out, but when a friend asked around, no one had complained about me, except the girls on e-board behind my back. Now I feel awkward being at chapter (given that it’s the middle of a term) and just doing normal sister events. Advice??
A: if you can take a “break” from your chapter for a while, without officially dropping out, it will give you a time to heal. i recommend you take one step back ~ to regroup, take a deep breath and quiet your nerves from what must be a very upsetting situation. i am so sorry this has happened! i wish your leadership had given you more time to change your approach and correct the things you were doing wrong, instead of booting you off the e-board. their actions seem quite extreme. and very shady the way they trumped up a false reason too.
luckily it’s almost christmas break and you will naturally be away from your sorority for several weeks. it couldn’t be better timing. when you are home, you can calmly think about what has happened and how to act when you go back to school.
from what you describe, it sounds like you were the victim of some unpleasant chapter politics. the sisterhood at large does NOT have a problem with you. that’s good news! there are plenty of sisters left to hang out with. focus on your favorite sisters who are not on the e-board. start fresh with the girls who are the farthest removed from your chapter officers. there are always numerous friend groups/cliques within a sorority. you need to connect with the sweetest, nicest sub-set you can find! look for security and healing with sisters who support you.
after break, let the past go and dedicate yourself to making a fresh start. spend your time with the BEST sisters and don’t dwell on what happened this semester. let the officers stress and strain over chapter leadership, while you relax, enjoy yourself and have FUN. not having you as a VP is their loss. you’re on to bigger and better things… free of all that drama and conflict, you will probably be much happier in the end! xoxo ;)
Q: I already have a little that I got earlier this semester and I LOVE her; we’re basically the same person. We got several new members through informal recruitment, and I offered to take one of them as another little in a few weeks. I’m excited but I’m also nervous because as a quadruplet I know a lot of twins end up feeling like their big plays favorites, and I don’t want that. Any advice on how to avoid those feelings?
A: dealing with twins is good preparation for your future, should you have children one day! you have to love each one of them equally, give each of them individual attention and keep the sibling rivalry under control. hello “motherhood.”
7 top tips for twin harmony:
- encourage the twins to be friends. schedule some fun activites together so your two littles can get to know each other better. you know and love them both, but they may not be close. the more they can bond ~ the less competition and rivalry.
- keep gifts and time equal. it’s important not to lavish one little with lots of expensive gifts and skimp on the goodies for the other. same goes for hanging out and socializing together. fair and equal need to be your top buzz words.
- make twins a positive. emphasize the benefits of having an expanded family line, such as another sister to do things with, sharing clothes, new connections to friends/guys, etc. make a list of all the benefits that apply to you and your twins and play it up.
- create strong team spirit. immediately set a theme for your family, select a name if you don’t already have one, order family shirts or costumes and build family pride. the three of you become the mighty ____! the envy of the chapter. more spirit = less infighting.
- ignore the small stuff. don’t give in to petty irritations. save your energy for only the major dilemmas (should they come along). as the big sister, establish that your family is not going to get bogged down in trivial sniping. if you set the right tone with your twins, they should respect you and get along better with each other.
- yes, you are a role model. if you gossip and backstab, your twins will too. if you thrive on drama and complaining, they will too. conversely, if you act as you expect them to act and treat them as you want them to treat you ~ you will have much greater harmony. role model the positive behavior you want for your ‘ideal’ family.
- be the mediator if needed. if trouble should arise, make sure you listen to both sides, treat both twins fairly and stay as neutral as possible. intervene as a loving big who is there to help and not pit one sister against the other. if you remain unbiased, you should be able to work out any bumps in the road.
"If you want to make friends, go out of your way to do things for other people — things that require time, energy, unselfishness, and thoughtfulness." ~ Lawrence G. Lovasik
"To have a good friend is one of the highest delights in life; to be a good friend is one of the noblest and most difficult undertakings." ~ Anon
Q: My sorority has had a lot of issues this semester that had me considering dropping letters. I was finally coming back around but we’ve had plans for three weeks to induct a new sweetheart this week and all of sudden someone posted on Facebook that we should move it to Saturday. The main reasons being that some people have had a long week of classes, an alum (who inducted every single sweetheart until now) will be here, and they’ll be able to celebrate (drink) more on Saturday.
The problem is there’s a sister who’s transferring next year and this may be the only sweetheart she could ever induct. I tried to defend her side but no one cares at all. The president, the only one who could overrule it, completely ignored the post even after she was tagged saying it was up to her. I’m honestly having trouble believing something so ridiculous even happened. Things like this make me think I joined the wrong group of girls but my sisters have already ambushed me with an intervention. They confronted me about always being mad about something and I’m basically viewed as the bitchy uptight sister for being the one who’s not afraid to put my foot down and bluntly say how I feel about our internal problems.
I’m loosing all faith in this sorority and I don’t see anything else I can do to help that. What would you suggest?
A: it’s not just your sisterhood, most sororities have these issues. when there’s a large group of girls you are guaranteed to have conflicts, different opinions, drama, last minute changes, power struggles and more! if it’s any consolation, members act like this everywhere. so you didn’t join the wrong sisterhood ~ you joined A sisterhood!
you are experiencing first hand what it’s like to be a member of an opinionated group. this will prepare you for your future career and “grown up” life where you will have to co-exist with a wide variety of people ~ all with their own agendas, priorities and self interests. to keep peace and keep your sanity, you need to find a balance between putting your foot down once in a while and being a constant agitator. you have an extra strong sense of right and wrong and it’s getting in the way of chapter harmony. your sisters want you to be happy and you want to be less stressed. only by compromising will all of you be at peace. here are some additional tips for improving your situation ~
- pick your battles: unless you are chapter president, most of these scheduling and event issues are not your concern. limit your anxiety to only the very biggest sorority dilemmas which effect you directly. save the fit throwing for dire circumstances. that way you won’t be the chapter nag or the girl who cried wolf.
- relax and step back: yes, your sisters may be inconsiderate and always messing things up, but it’s not your problem. when you belong to a group, you have to be flexible enough to go “with” the group on many issues. constantly criticizing and rocking the boat makes others upset and gives you a bad reputation. this is just part of group dynamics.
- don’t be a know it all: if you always find fault and express it loudly, you become the ‘negative nancy’ of your sorority. this wears thin and leads to the intervention you recently experienced. you appear unhappy and displeased all the time. even though you’re right ~ even though you could do it better ~ even though your sisters keep making bad decisions ~ even though it’s not right or fair!! being right all the time doesn’t lead to loving friendships and a happy greek life.
- try the indirect approach: learning how to work the politics of a sorority is important for effecting change. charging around taking a righteous stand and preaching from your soap box only puts a target on your back. you can have the same opinions and goals, just try a more diplomatic way of accomplishing them. your current method is not working. be more stealth, more kind and more sweet talking when expressing your views. arguing and confrontation never works well with other girls.
- time to grow: this is your opportunity for learning patience and improving your people skills. save your opinions for life and death issues only, run for office so you have the authority to back up your views, work on positive projects which will improve your chapter from within. you can move mountains with hard work and a positive glass-half-full attitude. try it for one semester and see what happens. i think you will feel better, have more impact and your sisters will be more open to your opinions. sometimes it’s all HOW you say it ~ with a smile or a frown!
Q: I’m a sister of a small sorority at a small college and this will be my first semester having littles. I have twins and I already love them to death but due to our school policies we had an extremely short education process and I haven’t had the chance to get to know them. Is there anyway I could easily get to know them so that I can get them things they’ll like and develop nicknames that reflect who they are?? Theres only one week left and with the semester ending I’m so busy. Please Help!! :(
A: luckily the holidays give you an opportunity to do some fun things together in the spirit of the season. how about ice skating and hot chocolate? or doing a little christmas shopping together, attending a christmas concert, painting ornaments, baking cookies, etc… anything fun and festive will help you bond.
but there is no “speed dating” for building friendships. TIME together is the only thing that creates the closeness and the personal nicknames you are longing for. you could create a humorous get-to-know-you questionnaire for your twins to fill out ~ in a totally funny way! but beyond that, you need time and shared experiences. do what you can and be patient. the love will grow as the year goes by. xoxo ;)
I'm my chapter's sunshine/spirit chair! This is a new position at my chapter, so we're still trying to figure it all out...but we have started some cute ideas! Every week at chapter, we do a "dotting" ceremony in which each sister will write a compliment about that week's chosen sister. We also choose a sister of the week who has done something to help the chapter in this recent past. In addition to this, I'm in charge of birthday and social media posts and spreading cheer with the other greeks!
THANK YOU for sharing your “sunshine” ideas. we had a follower request for sunshine inspiration recently and i appreciate the ideas!! xoxo ;)
I've noticed that sisters in my chapter and women who submit asks to this blog from around the country have problems with their bigs (maybe they're negligent or just plain rude) and I just want to tell y'all that while it sucks, focus on being an AWESOME big when you take a little so the cycle doesn't continue. Sometimes the person you want to look up to and admire isn't who you thought they were, but that's okay! Be your own mentor and be a mentor for others. :)
INDEED! AGREED! xoxoxo
thank you for sharing your big/little inspiration!! ;)
Hey! I've been trying to get a local greek life started on my campus bc administration is so opposed to having traditional NPC/IFC organizations. They want us to be coed with "gender equal" activities, and it's becoming so far off from our original vision. To my knowledge, locals don't need to be recognized by the school so I'm wondering if it's worth it to sacrifice the vision me & all my friends had for the sorority to become officially recognized by the school.
good grief. if you want an all-female “sorority” of some kind, it sounds like you will need to go around/outside the administration. there are some great co-ed greek organizations, but naturally they have a different flavor than a same gender chapter. personally i would vote for the local female sorority, rather than the co-ed school sanctioned group. by imposing these restrictions, the administration basically squelches all traditional sororities and fraternities from forming. which means you will never get the ‘total’ experience if you go with their mixed gender plan.
many local sororities have wonderful times and share a special sisterhood. i think that would be closer to your original vision. i would research the ins and outs of managing a local chapter by contacting other local sororities and learning how they do it. many local chapters function very well and give their sisters a meaningful experience.
a sorority or fraternity is suppose to be different than joining the co-ed debate team or the young democrats club. i believe same-sex institutions can inspire and mold the character of it’s members in a unique way. if you can, i would continue on the path to a local sisterhood. or ~ let the idea go (you tried!) and become involved in other things on your campus. sadly, your school is just not receptive to greek life and your time might be better spent pursuing other adventures. xoxo ;)