Hopefully you can find out about dues before recruitment! Many panhellenic’s will publish this information in their Recruitment Handbook ahead of time. Chapter dues can vary widely on the same campus. If finances are an issue, then you need some ballpark figures in advance of making your rush choices. Hopefully, the topic will be discussed at your PNM Orientation. That is a wonderful time to ask about it.
Sometimes sororities will have a chart of their financial obligations displayed in the sorority house during recruitment so all the PNMs can be comfortable with the expenses. But that doesn’t always happen. For your own security, it would be very beneficial to get an idea of what you are facing earlier rather than later.
You CAN ask sisters about it if needed, but make sure you don’t look pained or scared by the answers. You don’t want members to think you can’t handle the finances. They are looking for lifelong sisters who will make a long tern commitment. You don’t want to appear nervous or panicked during the important few minutes you have with each chapter. And you will need to ask each sorority the same question to get all the different rates.
Personally, I would rather talk about my amazing study abroad experience, or the time I won the gymnastic’s all around, than grill a sister on what the dues are. To me that’s information best gained elsewhere if at all possible. The moments are precious at each house and I would spend my time discussing exciting sorority topics instead. Uncomfortably discussing money is not my preferred PNM subject in the thick of recruitment! xoxo ;)
There is a fine line between being a “know it all” and being appropriately informed. You don’t want to be a complete dummy when it comes to the sororities ~ but you also want to be open to learning more during recruitment. The chapters work very hard to share their personality, experiences, facts and membership details with the PNMs. If you respond by saying “Oh gee, I already know all about your philanthropy” it will not go over well. LET the chapters educate you on what they’re all about. You also need some questions to ask the sisters. So it’s proper to appear inquisitive.
During rush, if you’re not surprised when learning the facts about each chapter, act enthusiastically interested! The way each sisterhood presents themselves is very important for making your rankings. Let your pre-rush research slide to the back of your mind, relax and open up to what new information is presented to you during the week. Advanced research is about the mind, while recruitment is more about the heart. Combine your new impressions, with what you already know, and you should make excellent PNM decisions! xoxo :)
I am rushing as a sophomore in the fall, and I can't decide between rushing a new sorority that is starting a colony or going through Panhellenic rush with the freshmen. Or should I rush both? Thanks!
IF there is the possibility to rush both ~ do that! If you just try for the new colony, then you have only 1 shot at membership. The full panhellenic recruitment will give you many more opportunities to go greek. You don’t want to rule out any chances for pledging. So, if the timing is right to explore ALL the chapter options, please seize the day and go for it. The odds are better when you have more choices! xoxo ;)
Please visit my FAQ Page for links to posts on questions sisters may ask PNMs and some questions PNMs can ask sorority members as well. If the sisters are creative, they will ask you about things which reveal your personality, like who you would invite to dinner, or what’s your favorite book made into a movie.
Before recruitment, it’s a good idea to review your own personal preferences and life experiences, so they are at the forefront of your mind. You can even write them down to help you remember (or study your PNM resume.) Often, when you’re nervous, it’s difficult to answer questions ‘on the fly.’ It’s easy to forget what you had for dinner last night, let alone what you did during the first semester of your senior year in HS. Review your own accomplishments before rush starts! These are some of the typical categories you should brush up on:
- Your leadership accomplishments
- Your favorite things like food, books, movies, people & places
- Role models in your life
- Your family, especially any quirky stories
- Your hometown - unique details are good
- Why you chose your college
- Your major and academic interests
- Hobbies & activites - anything a little different will make you more memorable
- Sports accomplishments
- Your history of living in different places or interesting vacations
- ALL of your likes & dislikes
- Your friendship experiences
- Volunteering & charity involvement
- Your dreams & goals
- Why you want to join a sorority
- What you have to offer a chapter
- Anything that makes you unique!
Practice by answering some “Questions for PNMs” and you will get comfortable thinking on your feet and being super charming! xoxo ;)
• 101 Creative Conversation Starters for Sisters to Ask PNMs
• 33 Questions to ASK PNMs
• 25 Interesting Questions to Ask PNMs During Rush
• Big/Little Speed Dating Questions (good for PNMs too!)
The best way to show interest is to naturally engage with the sisters you speak with. If you gush too much, and tell a chapter you’re super interested, you may seem overly eager or desperate. Sure enough, you will be cut the next day if you come on too strong. The chapters like to make up their own minds. Let the sororities pursue you a little bit. You should be a desirable PNM who the chapters are trying hard to “snag.”
Let the ‘courtship dance’ of recruitment take it’s course. You don’t need to force anything. Through your natural smiling, enthusiasm, interest, questions and responses ~ the chapters will be able to tell you are appropriately interested. Your goal as a PNM should be to show positive interest in EVERY sorority in the first few days. You never know who will invite you back or not. So during the first and second round, you must be really attentive and excited about all the houses. Sparkle during every round and let the rest fall into place.
When you get to the Preference Night round, then you can express deeper interest in your final 2-3 chapters. Keep your options open and share your happiness with ALL of your final choices. A PNM does not know 100% what will eventually happen on bid day. So be loving and enchanted with your final sororities through the very final minutes of recruitment! xoxo ;)
Typically the first day of recruitment means shorts and a cute shirt. You can also wear a summery skirt and top, or a casual sundress. Shorts, sundress, or skirt should all be acceptable under the banner of “casual attire.” They should be nice versions, while being relaxed and attractive. These are some examples of casual looks for day 1:
I went through rush last year but didn't end up receiving a bid. I had a rough time during rush and think it was because I was not prepared for college or being in a sorority. I plan on rushing again this year as a sophomore and I'm really nervous i will not receive a bid this year even though I think I'm ready. Do you think it is likely to happen again? Any advice?
I seriously doubt it will happen again! But you should review what occurred the first time and make necessary changes. If you were too shy and quiet, be more outgoing. If you were negative, be totally positive. If you saw the other PNMs doing things differently, or looking better groomed, step up your game in how you act and how you look. I know it’s difficult, but try to be objective about what areas you can improve before the next recruitment.
Also, make sure you are making wise choices as a PNM. If you dropped perfectly good chapters from your list, maybe they could actually be matches for you. Don’t be overly picky. View this second rush as a completely fresh start. Evaluate each sorority in a new light.
Take your previous rush experiences to heart, learn from what happened and you will greatly increase your odds for success. With an open mind I think you will be able to find a sorority home this time around! xoxo ;)
Hi there! I'm going to be a senior in high school and I just recently thought that I would want to join a sorority. I plan to go to Arizona State next year. I was just wondering what I need to do to rush. I know one girl was telling me about a letter she needed but I didn't understand that at all. I'm a smart and outgoing person and I'm student body president, so I wouldn't have a problem fitting in. But I just don't understand the steps of rushing.
You sound like an excellent future sorority girl! You have all the qualifications. Once you confirm your acceptance at ASU, then you can research their recruitment policies. Each school is a little different, so wait until you know for sure where you will be attending.
Your friend was telling you about recommendation letters which are needed at some universities. A good place to learn the BASICS of sorority recruitment in general is the sorority sugar HOMEPAGE! Take a look at my top navigation bar and click on the links to the Glossary of Terms and FAQ pages. There you will get an overview of the what it takes to rush.
Basically you register, get rec letters mailed in on your behalf, participate in a week of recruitment events and then finally join a chapter on bid day. Once you register, you will be provided with a Recruitment Handbook and lots of information about “how to do it.” You can also visit the websites and social media of the Panhellenic Council and individual chapters at ASU when the time comes.
You will start the process late spring 2015. So until then, keep your grades up, participate in lots of activities in HS, volunteer and make the most of your student government leadership. You will be an ideal PNM when you go away to college! xoxo ;)
Q: I’m attending the University of South Carolina and though recommendations aren’t required, I’d like to submit some anyway. My only issue is that since I’m from the north, I don’t know any alums at USC. Can I get recommendations from alums in the same sororities, but at other schools? Or is there a way to connect with USC alums? I’m having a hard time finding alums to write on my behalf.
A: You DO NOT have to get rec letters from alums who attended the same college you are going to! Most PNMs do not know alums from their future school, unless they happen to live in the university area. Girls get letters from their own hometown, region, or through other connections. A sorority letter writer can live anywhere in the country and have graduated from any college. This holds true for all NPC recruitments, not just your USC campus.
To find alumnae to write on your behalf, please visit my REC LETTER CONNECTION PAGE for lots of advice on how and where to get referrals. In your case, if letters are not required, you should really try for people who know you personally. Submitting several strong recommendations would be preferable to “stranger” letters. But do what you think is best. I hope you can round up a few friends of friends who were in sororities and they will write for you. There ARE greeks in the north if you look hard enough and work every possible family connection you have. xoxo ;)