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-   -   "You'll end up where you were meant to"... (http://www.greekchat.com/gcforums/showthread.php?t=14204)

carnation 01-26-2002 05:42 PM

"You'll end up where you were meant to"...
 
Hey guys--

So often when a rushee posts her experiences, someone will say, "Don't worry, you'll end up where you were meant to!" or something along those lines. It worries me every time because you know how quirky rush is and sometimes "our" GC rushees don't get bids.

Furthermore, PNMs at the big schools--like SEC schools--very often do not end up in a sorority where they were meant to be. The sororities have to cut big numbers right off and I have seen so many heartbroken PNMs who were active, involved, precious, leaders in their schools, well-liked, you name it--who found themselves with only (shall we say) "troubled" sororities from which to choose. Can't you just picture their dismay if they think that's all they're good for? And no, not all women want to take the bull by the horns and try to turn around a very weak group.

I've put off posting this for months because I didn't know how to say it in a PC way but finally decided I had to say it. Women from SEC schools will understand!

localsororities 01-26-2002 05:45 PM

Amen!

tcsparky 01-26-2002 08:47 PM

Could we rephrase....?
 
Perhaps instead we should say- "Good luck. We hope it'll work out for you." Vague, yes, but maybe more in step with what really happens.

shadokat 01-26-2002 11:53 PM

Well, I don't speak from any SEC experience, but I speak from someone who "ended up where she was meant to". I agree that some folks don't want to take the bull by the horns and rebuild a weak sorority, but if that's where you were meant to be, why is that so terrible?? I guess my problem with what you said carnation, and you know I love you!, is that with an open mind, weak sororities may not be so weak and strong sororities may not be so strong. It's, of course, ridiculous to think that everyone will go through recruitment with an open mind, but I honestly believe that if every woman who has all those GREAT qualities you describe was meant only to go to the strong houses she thinks she belongs in, then of course, we'll never rebuild all of our houses and continue greek traditions.

My advice for rushees, before you think you don't belong somewhere just because of a reputation, try with an open mind to see if you do belong. Sometimes it just takes an open mind to realize that some women really do end up where they were meant to be.

FuzzieAlum 01-27-2002 12:04 AM

There are girls who end up in the right place - after first pledging somewhere else. And there are girls who don't end up anywhere, when they in fact are fine candidates for sisterhood. There are girls who depledge because they find out their chapter drinks too much, and they assume other organizations are the same way.

Not everyone ends up in the right place, even if that's what we wish for them!

I agree that "weaker" chapters might be exactly right for some people (heck, I deliberately picked a smaller chapter on my campus), but if a girl feels very strongly that a "weak" group is not what she wants, no one can make her be happy there. It won't be right for her.

carnation 01-27-2002 12:14 AM

Hey shadokat!

I didn't mean small or new sororities, I meant seriously weak! The kind that even a rushee can tell will fold within a couple of years. There was this one sorority at an SEC school this year that was incredibly awful and had very, very few PNMs return for second parties as opposed to the 200 or so everyone else got. The chapter president's younger sister cried when that was the only pref invitation she got. Very often on a big campus, there are 1 or 2 sororities like that.

At large SEC schools (or just very selective schools), the rushees who seem to have the most choices are those who have not only succeeded in high school but have visited the campus several times in high school and made lots of friends. (Or they already had those older friends in high school.) Often, the PNMs who get overlooked during a mass rush may be from smaller towns or out-of-state or by unfortunate coincidence, went to a high school where there were tons of truly outstanding girls and the sororities know they can't take them all.

A PNM who has been a big success in high school usually wants to pledge a sorority that is really active and visible on campus, the kind who can make her a big success and open doors for her on campus! For instance, at Auburn it was well known that if you wanted to be selected for certain popular activities, you'd better belong to certain sororities that could get your foot in the door because all their members were from those sororities! Otherwise, forget it. At many schools, the sororities make a big deal about showcasing their members who are in outstanding activities-- and woe to the sororities who have little to tell!

What it boils down to is that I've often been in the rooms where rushees get their invites back and I've seen their shock and horror if they were heavily cut. I'd feel really bad if I'd told some of those girls beforehand that they'd end up where they were supposed to, especially if they were left with 1 or 2 very weak groups...and most especially if they already realized, as many savvy rushees do, that most sororities at such schools never have open rush and worse yet, that sophomores on up tend to have very few choices in rush.

AchtungBaby80 01-27-2002 12:20 AM

Oh, yeah, I hear what you're saying. A year and a half after joining my group, I still have second thoughts sometimes. I didn't know much about the sororities on my campus before rush, but after the first day I had chosen a certain chapter as my favorite and still wonder why they cut me right before preference. I wasn't heartbroken and didn't cry my eyes out, but I do think about it occasionally. And I also sometimes ask myself what if I cut the wrong sororities, or what if I picked the wrong sorority out of the 3 I preffed. I don't let myself obsess over it because it's important that I make the best of what I chose, but I'm just glad to know I'm not the only person who thought that "you'll end up where you're meant to be" was a bunch of sheeeeeeite.;)

Aphigal 01-27-2002 12:21 AM

I guess the thing is what defines "weak" Although I have helped chapters for years who are weak in membership, never have I came across a chapter who is weak across the board.

Many of the chapters I have visited with weak recruitment numbers (and all the things that come along with that -weak social calendar, not a great rep on campus, etc etc) have some of the best sisterhood, new member programs, and most inspiring presentation of ritual I have ever seen.

On the flip side those chapters that are "tops" seem to struggle with fiscal management, programming, retention and sometimes risk management or new member education issues.

I guess that no matter where the chapter sits in terms of the rush heap, there are always areas of improvement!

BearyCuteAPhi 01-27-2002 12:39 AM

my opinion...
 
One can never know what to expect. All we can do is go through recruitment with an open mind and by being your true self. :D That way whatever happens you know you were yourself and if they did not offer you a bid, you probably didn't belong there anyway.:p

Ronnie:)

The1calledTKE 01-27-2002 01:09 AM

Re: "You'll end up where you were meant to"...
 
Quote:

Originally posted by carnation
Hey guys--

So often when a rushee posts her experiences, someone will say, "Don't worry, you'll end up where you were meant to!" or something along those lines. It worries me every time because you know how quirky rush is and sometimes "our" GC rushees don't get bids.

Furthermore, PNMs at the big schools--like SEC schools--very often do not end up in a sorority where they were meant to be. The sororities have to cut big numbers right off and I have seen so many heartbroken PNMs who were active, involved, precious, leaders in their schools, well-liked, you name it--who found themselves with only (shall we say) "troubled" sororities from which to choose. Can't you just picture their dismay if they think that's all they're good for? And no, not all women want to take the bull by the horns and try to turn around a very weak group.

I've put off posting this for months because I didn't know how to say it in a PC way but finally decided I had to say it. Women from SEC schools will understand!

good point!

AXWhoah 01-27-2002 02:57 AM

While you all made good points I am inclined to believe that fate has a plan for all of us. Just because a girl doesn't end up in a sorority where she fits in doesn't mean that she isn't a good candidate or anything. Perhaps it just means that it wasn't meant to be. Maybe she wasn't meant to be in a sorority, I believe everything happens for a reason. So maybe we really do end up where we were meant to be, even if that means we're not in a house. Just my humble opinion.

aggieAXO 01-27-2002 03:12 AM

Unfortunately those are the chapters that are most likely to close at least at my school. It is very sad to pledge a sorority and then find out you have to go alum the next semester-this happened to 2 of the sororities on my campus.

Quote:

Originally posted by Aphigal
I guess the thing is what defines "weak" Although I have helped chapters for years who are weak in membership, never have I came across a chapter who is weak across the board.

Many of the chapters I have visited with weak recruitment numbers (and all the things that come along with that -weak social calendar, not a great rep on campus, etc etc) have some of the best sisterhood, new member programs, and most inspiring presentation of ritual I have ever seen.

On the flip side those chapters that are "tops" seem to struggle with fiscal management, programming, retention and sometimes risk management or new member education issues.

I guess that no matter where the chapter sits in terms of the rush heap, there are always areas of improvement!


CutiePie2000 01-27-2002 03:49 AM

"You'll end up where you were meant to"...
 
Quote:

Originally posted by carnation
Hey guys--
So often when a rushee posts her experiences, someone will say, "Don't worry, you'll end up where you were meant to!" or something along those lines. It worries me every time because you know how quirky rush is and sometimes "our" GC rushees don't get bids.

Can't you just picture their dismay if they think that's all they're good for? And no, not all women want to take the bull by the horns and try to turn around a very weak group.

I've put off posting this for months because I didn't know how to say it in a PC way but finally decided I had to say it. Women from SEC schools will understand!

Carnation,
I am really glad that you brought this up, because I am someone who had a disappointing, nay, DEVASTING rush. I rushed and was bid by a group that I did not want to be in at all. I really do feel that there should be some sort of "disclaimer" for girls who are about to embark on rush...they should be forewarned that they could be supremely pleased or supremely disappointed.

I ended up accepting my bid and then turned it down 2 days later. When I opened my bid envelope, I burst in tears because my 2 final parties had been a group that I loved and a group that I did not want to be in whatsoever
(Sidebar: on my campus at that time, we were not ALLOWED to drop sororities, if you got invited back, you had to go. That is how I kept ending up getting invited back to the group that I didn't want, and I would never be so uncouth as to say to someone's face "I don't want to be in this sorority". Panhel has since changed and now PNM's are now allowed to drop groups at that campus.) When I opened my bid and starting crying really hard, my PX pretty well could not console me, and my tears were not that of someone who had gotten their #2 pick, my tears were that I was bid by a group that I did not want and now I was stuck and could not rush again for a whole year. Dropping out prior to this did not even enter my mind, because stupid me, I didn't even know that Informal Rush or COB existed. I just thought...if you don't Formal Rush, there's no other way to become a member in a sorority). Also, when I filled in my bid card, I was bullied by one of the other Rho Chi's who told me that I MUST put down both of Preference Parties; I couldn't put down 1 and then some other groups (I didn't want to Suicide Bid, but I didn't want to put down the group that I didn't want either).

Put it this way, I went to a Sigma Chi party after accepting my bid and burst into tears when I saw the other rushees who were bid by other sororities that I would have longed to be in (I could tell what sororities they had got by their "ribbons"). I returned my bid shortly after that because I knew that I should not go through with pledging this sorority, when I knew in my deepest heart that I would always long to be in one of the other ones.

Now before everyone jumps on me and says, "You should have given that group a chance", please know that I tried, I really did.
However, (to quote Erika XO "nobody goes into rush with the idea of joining the least prestigious chapter on campus. Nobody likes getting cut. It has been said that if you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. That works in reverse too. If you are part of a group that is thought of as the prettiest, or the smartest, or the richest, or the sweetest & coolest, the perception will be that you have that quality too. It is only natural for people to want to be a part of that." )


I had transferred from a non-Greek university, because my Dad drowned in kayaking accident just after I turned 19 and I wanted to be in a university that was nearer to my family. As it turned out, that nearby university had a Greek system and I thought a sorority would be very good for me, so that I could have a big circle of girlfriends who would support me since I was still in mourning and really needed it. I really would have liked to have been surrounded by a sorority that was strong and established on campus, not one that was in danger of having its charter yanked due to small numbers! In hindsight, I don't think I was able to put my best foot forward duing rush and I don't think I had it "in me" to turn a weak chapter around.

I also have to say, "Can't you just picture their dismay if they think that's all they're good for" hits the nail on the head. I was devasted that I wasn't bid by one of the more (err...) "popular" groups. What can I say, back then, I was 20, things like that are important when you're 20. I saw the stronger, popular sororities, and I pretty well shredded my self-esteem because I thought I didn't get in because I wasn't pretty enough, good enough, cool enough whatever.

Anyhow, I managed to bounce back and 11 years after that disappointing rush, I was alumna initiated into a sorority that I LOVE. But trust me, when I hear of girls who are disappointed in rush, I do feel their pain.

(You can also read more of my disappointing rush experience :
here )


mmcat 01-27-2002 09:39 AM

wow
 
cutiepie...
quite a post...
i'm glad it all has worked out for you.
mmcat

ZetaLuvBunny 01-27-2002 11:13 AM

I hadn't even considered the effect that phrase might have on people, but now that I think about it, it's so true! Sometimes it sets girls up with too high of expectations and they end-up being dissapointed. Yes, especially here in the South where your average state university might have anywhere from 200 to 400 rushees each fall.

A good example might be my roommate. She's a total sweetheart, and we had a whole conversation a few nights ago about our different sororities, comparing the sisterhood. I had been saying something about an activity with my sisters, and out of the blue she asked, "Do you really like your sorority? I mean, are you all really close?" She said several of her sisters are so uptight and serious about everything that it's not fun for her anymore sometimes. The few girls I do know in that sorority are really friendly, but I do have to agree that they seem very serious, and they seem to not do much "fun stuff".

It's true that we all need some seriousness in order to maintain our dignity, but it is, however, a *social* sorority. Apparently her and her sisters really never hang out. In my case, although it's not as if I hang out with them 24/7, but we really do have good, close, sisterhood in our chapter.
A few examples: After pretty much every meeting, someone will spontaneously say "hey, let's go to Chili's or O'Charlie's", and usually anywhere from ten to thirty of us will show up, and hang out there for a couple hours. One of our new officers, after noticing that some people were eating lunch alone, came up with the brilliant :D idea of having particular days in which we all meet up for lunch (of course, it's not required, but certainly a good idea) and hang out together. Then two other girls piped-up to say that on Tuesdays and Thursdays they bring lunches to the chapter room and watch TV in there together.

We also have the occasional "movie night" where we watch a video in the chapter room in our pajamas, and bring snacks to share. Admittedly, my Big and I don't hang out all that often, but she works a lot and that's the main reason. Nonetheless, she's always there for me if I really need something. One time when I was frustrated with the stuff piling up in my dorm room, I called my Big and she drove me to a Target on a spur-of-the-moment-buy-some-storage-shelves trip before meeting. She's always there to lend an ear if I have something to vent about, too. :D

I know not everyone's so lucky as far as sisterhood goes, but you know what? The majority of people at Greek Chat to me represent the "creme de la creme" of Greeks in this world, because of their honest advice and willingness to help others. If anyone's going to do something about improving the Greek system, it's GCers. Carnation & PnguinTrax here are two great examples. :D I would definitely be lost if I hadn't found GC.

justamom 01-27-2002 12:07 PM

Carnation, you and I have had so many exchanges (and I'm certain there will be many more) on this subject. You really did hit the nail on the head regarding this situation.

This is slightly off topic-One bright point is, if you want to call it that, those girls that are rushing and get cut from the one or two sororities they have focused on will often drop out. At least that's what happened to several I know. This opens up the "spaces" for other girls. In a way, it weeds out those who look upon membership purely as a status symbol rather than a sisterhood within the Greek system. Who knows, it might make the system as a whole stronger.

Back to topic-it's hard to see these young ladies face disappoint-ment, It's even harder in some cases to know what to say when
you can feel their hurt in their posts. If we could do anything to help them understand that it is NO REFLECTION of their worth, it's really a lot of variables and a touch of luck. I'm glad you posted this. I think we all will choose our words more caefully in the future.
JAM

greeklawgirl 01-27-2002 01:41 PM

This is an issue that never even occurred to me. Thanks for making me think about something from an entirely new perspective!

tridelta4ever 01-27-2002 03:07 PM

Carnation, thanks for bringing this up. I have some strong opinions on this topic, like most of us here.

I have been one of the people who has said "you'll end up where you were meant to" when talking to rushees who are worried about whether they are making the right choice. It's meaningful to me because I truly believe that fate has a way of making things happen for an important reason. My friend Kristin is a good example. She rushed with me and did not receive a bid, although she had a great rush experience. At the time, I couldn't believe it and she was of course very hurt. However, she ended up rushing the next year and ending up in a sorority that she hadn't even entertained the idea of joining the year before. Now she is in the right place and feels the same way I do about her sorority.
~Now, take Corina from UCSC (wishin hopin) - she had a very upsetting rush experience and was, in my opinion, dirty rushed in a way. Now she is on the cusp of something completely new and exciting. Something that would not have existed had she not had that horrible experience with the sorority that did not offer her a bid. Now she has enabled many other women to benefit from sisterhood who would not have ever meshed with the only other NPC sorority on her campus. I think that's amazing. Also, I believe that I ended up where I was meant to. From day 1 of rush, I felt a bond with the women of Tri-Delta more than any of the other great sororities I spent time with. I went into the whole process with an open mind, not even really expecting that I'd get a bid, but when the time came, it was such an emotional experience for me on bid-day because I truly felt that I had found my "home" and my destiny. I still get emotional just thinking about it, and what a special time that was. :D :)

Additionally, let me just be honest and say that I do not think that the Greek System is for everyone. To be blunt, if you rush and the sorority you want to be in doesn't have members who click with you enough to offer a bid, why on earth would you want to be there anyway? I would much rather not be in the Greek System at all, than be with people who weren't sure about me. Also, I have friends who I don't think would have enjoyed rush, much less the responsibilities that go along with being in a sorority or fraternity. I'm not in any way implying that I think all Greeks are elite and better than others, just that I absolutely think that not everyone is meant to be Greek.

Anyway, thanks for listening.

By the way, Cutiepie, I loved your post....it really spoke to me. :)

*Carrie*

James 01-27-2002 03:12 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by justamom

This is slightly off topic-One bright point is, if you want to call it that, those girls that are rushing and get cut from the one or two sororities they have focused on will often drop out. At least that's what happened to several I know. This opens up the "spaces" for other girls. In a way, it weeds out those who look upon membership purely as a status symbol rather than a sisterhood within the Greek system. Who knows, it might make the system as a whole stronger.

JAM

Yes, but isn't that the problem we are discussing? These girls focused on sororities that fit their image of themselves or who they want to be, and faced with going somewhere they perceived to be an environment they either wouldn't or woudn't want to fit in, they quit.

I'm a a bit of a jocky guys guy, pretty agressive with decent social skills, I wouldn't want to be forced to join the proverbial audiovisual fraternity with the pocket protectors. Guys that think girls that are 4's on a scale of 1-10 are hot.

Also, Erika's quote, resurected by Zetaluvbunny, is true. It maters a great deal who you hang with. How many of you met your SO's from your social groupings? So the quality of the people and your access to certain things can be greatly dtermined by which group you belong to.

You always see certain Fraternities with the hottest girls, and some always with the appearance handicapped ones. Which is the one you would rather hang with?

And it may not be PC, but for the record that is very important.
IT sounds like panhel has created a pretty flawed system and created inequities in the name of conformity and protection of the weaker.





Also, the quote by

carnation 01-27-2002 03:31 PM

I think a lot of the problems with the big Southern schools lie with numbers. With hundreds and hundreds of rushees, it's entirely possible and probable that well over a hundred girls will be overlooked due to sheer numbers.

As I mentioned, a girl from a small town or one where a certain sorority has no current members might be a perfect fit for ABC. All her friends know it and she does too--but the members have 6 days in which to choose girls they haven't met or been allowed to contact over the summer and they're probably going to go after the ones they know or know of, as well as the legacies or those whom the prominent alums push. How many times have I heard members of a "prominent" sorority say about a girl, "I wish I'd known her when she came through rush! I'd put my pin on her!" But they didn't then and the girl was cut.

Many, many girls don't get cut because the members didn't want them. They get cut simply because the sorority didn't know them beforehand and had no way to and the rules say they must cut a certain number each day (which of course, is necessary).

Lately I've had the chance to get acquainted again with several women I knew in college. Several were in what you'd call medium-tier or bottom-tier sororities, I guess. At the time, I never knew that they resented it. Now they discuss it heatedly, how they rushed with high expectations that came crashing down to earth fairly early in rush. How they knew if they got a bid from anyone other than the "Big 6" (Auburn) or the "Big 4" (Arkansas), they could kiss things like Mortar Board or Angel Flight or Miss Homecoming goodbye. How they accepted bids anyway but always desperately envied those who were chosen by the biggies. They don't regret their Greek experiences and made some friends and got nominally involved on campus but they'll always wonder what could've been.

So far, the Greek Chat women who are involved with the big schools are the majority of those who are saying, "Amen!" All this is hard to picture if you went to a school where the sororities rush the PNM. It's a pretty safe bet to say that at SEC schools, the PNM has to impress the sorority.

James 01-27-2002 04:09 PM

Even in some of the smaller Greek Systems I have seen some girls get upset because they pledged a sorority that they wouldn't have normally chosen. some have gotten very bitter and deafiliated or just had a bad time.

Obviously this can be true even if you get the one of your choice, but since you made that choice free and clear you are likely to be less bitter about it.

Resentment and biterness will poison an experience quicker than anything else.

33girl 01-27-2002 08:37 PM

No offense to SEC schools, but thank God I didn't go to one LOL :)

I know what carnation is saying - maybe XYZ is where so and so is meant to be, but when XYZ has 75 legacies with 4.0's come through the door, it might not matter. It's like if I see a sweater in the store that is perfect for me - if there are 10 of it in the store, and the other 10 people who want that sweater come in before me, I'm screwed. And it has nothing to do with me personally.

As far as joining "weak" chapters, or chapters that look like they are going to fold - it is all in what you want. I know some women who joined chapters that closed the semester after they pledged, and they wouldn't trade it for ANYTHING. They still found sisterhood and lasting friendships. It's like that line in Steel Magnolias - "I'd rather have 30 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special." However, there are women who only want social position and prestige out of a sorority experience. And if that's all you are looking at groups with, you're a user, and a loser. If you want to be in a sorority that just happens to be the most prestigious on campus - because that's who you like the most and feel comfortable with - fine. But I'd like to know how many of these women in the "big 5" or whatever are really happy and close with their sisters, and how many of them are just sucking up their real selves because of the prestige. That's the women the NPC system is supposed to weed out, but unfortunately it doesn't always.

Angels&Arrows 01-27-2002 09:03 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by 33girl
But I'd like to know how many of these women in the "big 5" or whatever are really happy and close with their sisters, and how many of them are just sucking up their real selves because of the prestige.
Interestingly enough getting into one of these "big 5" has to do with who you know, what activites you were involved with, your grades and your RECS... most of the young ladies who pledge a strong chapter, at a strong southern school, went to school with the girls in the chapters, or mothers are friends at Jr. League, their fathers golf toghter, they were in the same Sunday School class, etc.

I did not go to an SEC school, but I did go to a mid-size southern school... and those girls who were looking for prestige, normally did not get a bid... because their sisters and their potential new sisters are very close...

CutiePie2000 01-27-2002 09:32 PM

I don't know what an SEC school is?
 
Is it South Eastern Conference (just a guess) and if so, which specific universities are those? :confused:

carnation 01-27-2002 10:07 PM

The Southeast Conference--let me see...Auburn (yeah!), Arkansas (yeah!), Mississippi State (yeah!),Bama, Florida, LSU, Vandy, Kentucky, Georgia, Ole Miss, Tennessee, and South Carolina. But there are other large Southern schools such as Florida State and the University of Texas that have killer rushes..and some smaller schools too, as well as some non-Southern schools like Indiana.

33girl, your sweater analogy is perfect! And as the years go by, we'll have even more girls wanting "that certain sweater" because we'll have more legacies. I couldn't count the chapters I know of who always have more legacies than open spots.

justamom 01-27-2002 11:38 PM

33girl-." However, there are women who only want social position and prestige out of a sorority experience. And if that's all you are looking at groups with, you're a user, and a loser. If you want to be in a sorority that just happens to be the most prestigious on campus - because that's who you like the most and feel comfortable with - fine.
No way could I have said it better. Your entire post is on the money.
I don't think anyone can fully comprehend the reality of a competative rush unless you go through it. I had blow by blow descriptions and still am amazed that my daughter really enjoyed it! She was one of the fortunate ones who found true happiness.

GUESS WHAT! She just got back from a GREEK RETREAT! EVERYONE was represented IFC NPC NHPC (is there a male equivalent for IFC?) They were in Mississippi for the weekend. She went on and on about how much she learned. She was so impressed by the reps of NHPC and the way they do their "rush" and the fact that they "live" their ritual daily. Something she would like to see instilled in her org. OOPS should have made another thread. Oh well...

shadokat 01-27-2002 11:42 PM

I'd love to say I could argue this point, but with no SEC experience, I guess my argument doesn't really hold a lot of weight in this thread. I still believe though, that if you go through recruitment with an open mind, you can find the place you were meant to be in. I'm sorry for those who had awful recruitment experiences, and for all those legacies and qualified women who didn't get a bid where they wanted to go.

As 33girl said, I'm so glad I didn't go to a school with such a politically motivated system. I couldn't have asked for a more fulfilling and enjoyable sorority experience. Yeah, it had ups and downs and yeah, I didn't go to the strongest chapter on campus, even though I did go to their pref party. Who knows if I would've gotten a bid or not? But truly, I couldn't care less...I am where I was meant to go, and if I didn't believe that, I wouldn't continue as an alum to volunteer and bring all that D Phi E has to offer to collegiates.

*stepping off soapbox*

TechAPhi 01-28-2002 02:43 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by carnation
All this is hard to picture if you went to a school where the sororities rush the PNM. It's a pretty safe bet to say that at SEC schools, the PNM has to impress the sorority.
I read most of this thread not really "getting" it. But the statements above finally encapsulated it for me. The schools I've worked with are nothing like these SEC universities, with their enormous numbers of legacies and the value that is apparently placed on being in the "right" group (however one defines that). I can't even fathom it, to be honest, but at least I can see where you're coming from now. Thanks Carnation! :)

juniorgrrl 01-28-2002 03:50 AM

Never once in rush did I think the sorority was trying to impress me. I went into it full well knowing that I had to impress them. There were 899 other girls out there to choose from.

There was only one sorority that didn't make quota at LSU. And they had the nerve to drop me (one of the involved people from high school with a 4.0) from formal AND informal (twice). I have no idea what they were looking for, but rumor is that nationals is living in-house this year. They still have a really high pledge attrition rate. *shrug*

Before I rushed, a friend of mine in a sorority told me "Don't worry, 200 girls know where you belong better than you do" While I understand she was trying to say that they could see if I would fit into their group, that really infuriated me. I went through rush feeling like the hand of fate was guiding it all - that I had no control over things. I also felt like she was priming me to be part of a groupthink mindset.

One major reason I dropped out of rush that day was because it finally gave me a feeling of control. For an entire week, I was told I was not good enough to attend the events of 8 out of the 10 groups on campus, after a brief 30 minute meeting. When I filled in the "withdraw" bubble on the scantron card, I felt empowered. I walked out of that room with my head high, feeling like I had finally taken control of the situation.

Granted, I think I could have been happy at the house that I had left for pref. However, I was just so tired of being told where to go, that I wanted to tell every last one of THEM where to shove it.

tridelta4ever 01-28-2002 07:07 AM

Amen, 33girl. Very well said.



Quote:

Originally posted by 33girl
I know what carnation is saying - maybe XYZ is where so and so is meant to be, but when XYZ has 75 legacies with 4.0's come through the door, it might not matter. It's like if I see a sweater in the store that is perfect for me - if there are 10 of it in the store, and the other 10 people who want that sweater come in before me, I'm screwed. And it has nothing to do with me personally.

As far as joining "weak" chapters, or chapters that look like they are going to fold - it is all in what you want. I know some women who joined chapters that closed the semester after they pledged, and they wouldn't trade it for ANYTHING. They still found sisterhood and lasting friendships. It's like that line in Steel Magnolias - "I'd rather have 30 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special." However, there are women who only want social position and prestige out of a sorority experience. And if that's all you are looking at groups with, you're a user, and a loser. If you want to be in a sorority that just happens to be the most prestigious on campus - because that's who you like the most and feel comfortable with - fine. But I'd like to know how many of these women in the "big 5" or whatever are really happy and close with their sisters, and how many of them are just sucking up their real selves because of the prestige. That's the women the NPC system is supposed to weed out, but unfortunately it doesn't always.


ErikaXO 01-28-2002 10:29 AM

I agree to a large extent WITHIN THE LIMITS OF MY OWN EXPERIENCE with the "ending up where you belong" thing. If anyone saw my post in the "Rush experts please reply" or whatever thread I do feel strongly that the chapters pretty much can tell who is going to fit in and who isn't. BUT.....

I think that in the South, it is just plain different. Sheer numbers make the difference. I would imagine that even the "weaker" houses tend to have girls who would be A-list anywhere else, just because there were too darn many of them. But what separates the cute little 4.0 cheerleader who made top tier from the cute little 4.0 cheerleader who didn't? That's where the difference comes in....that's where the sorority's "expertise" counts. Maybe there is a nuance in personality that just clicks better for one girl than the other.

As I mentioned in the other thread, we had a lot of girls at Kent who got stuck on one top-3 chapter when they really fit in better at a different one. Fortunately the chapters were strong enough that if a girl didn't get bid by her top choice, she generally took her bid and did very well at the other house, realizing that in personality/etc. she actually did fit better where she ended up. I think a lot of you saw my own rush story....I had a very hard time choosing between the 3 even til the end!!!!! I probably would have been equally happy anywhere.

But what of the girl who has decided that she is going to go to college and change her image? Maybe she was a really cute, nice, smart girl in HS but she just wasn't part of the in crowd. She has decided that she always deserved better and she's going to go to college and make everything different. Maybe she goes to a large school with a small top tier, a large pool of really great sororities that just don't have the "superstar" status of the elite few, and then a few "weaker" houses. She goes in with her mind set on one of the superstatus houses and gets cut from them all by the end of 2nd. She may be a perfect fit for several of the other chapters, GOOD chapters but not the megaselective ones. She says "ha, not for me" and drops out. This is a girl who has her priorities screwed up and who is not being realistic about herself. Let's face it....there are girls who go through rush thinking that they are going to join a house and it is going to make them popular, beautiful, and datable by the hottest richest guys. These are not the girls who belong where they think they do. If you go into rush for the purpose of getting an image overhaul, you are doing it for the wrong reasons. The girls who come in radiating a relaxed confidence are the ones who go top-ier almost every time.

I stand by what I said before, my line that got quoted again in this thread. But the difference is in recognizing if you really belong where you think you do or not. There are girls out there who are never ever going to get into one of the "best" houses and if they come in expecting to, they are going to be disappointed. On the other hand, there are girls who SHOULD expect it, and those are the ones who are the really tragic cases at places like the SEC schools.

Cutiepie, your post brought tears to my eyes. I know I would have felt the same way you did. I am so glad you eventually found your way into the chapter you loved....I am only sorry that you missed out on the collegiate part.

ErikaXO 01-28-2002 10:35 AM

Hard to believe I could have left anything out of that book I wrote above....but I forgot to mention one thing....I think that the stringent rules of panhel rush cause part of the problem especially at the big Southern schools. If the girls were allowed to talk to the members, and there wasn't so much hands-off attitude, maybe the chapters would have more of a chance to see the girls for real and make a more educated choice before the mass executions....I can only fault the chapters so much though. They are given such a short period of time to try and evaluate these huge numbers of girls, girls who are going to be a part of the sisterhood that means so much to them. They aren't allowed to talk to the girls on campus, they aren't even allowed to talk ABOUT them. They have to be choosy!!! The system just doesn't seem to be entirely effective.

AchtungBaby80 01-28-2002 01:10 PM

I go to U of K which is an SEC school, and I'm here to tell you it's heinous. I've been through rush as both rushee and rusher, and it's no better in either position. This past fall we had around 600 going through rush, I believe, and it's so so so hard to keep anyone straight much less figure out who would be best for my sorority. I still feel sorry for the poor rushees, though (pardon my un-PC terms, but I think the new ones are ridiculous). Even if I love a certain girl to death, she might not get to be my sister because I myself do not have a say in who gets invited back--that's all up to the "invitation committee", made up of four or five of our members. The other hundred girls in my chapter don't have a say, either, so I think a lot depends on sheer luck.

And whoever tells you that recs don't matter at big schools like this is plain nuts! On the registration forms for rush, PNMs are specifically instructed that it is not their job to obtain recs, because if they are required it is the sorority's responsibility to get them. (Heh?!?!?) So, being very green at this whole rush thing, I didn't have any recs sent in--although I would have had one for three or four different groups, and I wonder now if things would have turned out a lot different. I don't really regret pledging my sorority because I picked a good one (although the dynamics are changing fast, but that's another story), but I do wonder about it. So the moral of the story is, rush is NOT a good way to find out where each girl "belongs," but I can't complain too much because I don't have a good alternative idea. But I still stand by what I said before...that "you'll end up where you belong" is a bunch of baloney.

AchtungBaby80 01-28-2002 01:18 PM

Oh, I forgot something. There are many, many girls who get into the "elite" chapters (here, at least) just to say they belong. It happens quite a bit. I personally know several members of the largest sororities on campus who do not go to meetings, who do not participate in Greek events, etc., but they all carry their little lettered tote bags around. Most of the chapter houses here are the same size, and we always wondered how in the heck the sororities with over 150 members managed to fit in their chapter room when we outgrew ours around the 90-member mark...but we found out it's because a significant number of their members don't attend meetings. Someone made the point earlier that rush is supposed to weed these girls out but it doesn't--well, whoever said that, you're right!

LexiKD 01-28-2002 03:43 PM

Although I didn't attend a huge southern school, I have worked with many women that have and have many friends that went through at huge schools and although I cannot relate quantity wise I have some Panhellenic opinons.

Since I worked with PH for the 4 years I was at school and never saw Recruitment from the chapter side until last year as an alumnae I feel that no matter what you are looking for and no matter where you end up that it wouldn't make that big of a difference.

I love KD and know it is the group for me, but I would think I would be as happy in another group beacuse I would have made the best out of it as I have currently. Some PNMs have no idea what sorority life is really about and no matter what chapter you join all NPC groups have great experiences that she will enjoy and get the most out of.

I bet if you lined all PNMs up and split them into groups and assigned a chapter they would all be as happy as if they had gone through the process. At such large schools I cannot imagine how you wouldn't get lost in the choas. I am impressed by the manner the chapter women have it down to a science, something I would not be good at!

SigKapSweetie 01-28-2002 04:11 PM

I rushed at UF (SEC school), and I ended up just where I was meant to. :D
My chapter is the smallest on campus; I guess that would give it a 'weak' reputation according to this thread. During round 3, I cut two of the largest chapters on campus, and cut two more during prefs, all in favor of my 'weak' chapter. Rushees need to realize that the 'strength' of a chapter might not have anything to do with whether they belong there. My chapter was the only one where I felt like I could be myself and not be fake 24/7 to get the other girls to accept me. I realize some chapters do simply have 'weak' reputations, and that discourages some rushees from looking at those houses, but if they can see past it, sometimes it's the smaller houses they're really meant to be in. :)

GammaPhiBabe 01-28-2002 04:36 PM

I went to an SEC school. I had good recs and a long list of high school activities including winning beauty pageants and lots of volunteer work. I had a good GPA. I'm not saying that I was hot stuff or anything, but I just wanted to let you know where I'm coming from.
I ended up in a "weak" house. Gamma Phi Beta is not that strong in the Southeast. People used to ask me what sorority I was in and when I told them they would say, "You don't LOOK like a Gamma Phi Beta." or "You're kidding, right?"
The thing is, I felt at home there. The sisterhood there was real and the girls didn't make me feel like I was being judged on my looks or my car or "what my daddy does for a living," like many of the other houses did. I could have gone to a bigger house, but I don't think I would have been as happy or as involved.
At first, I was disappointed when I realized that I would have to work hard to overcome the "reputation" of my sorority, but I've come to realize that, while I was never going to be homecoming queen, I was given a world of opportunites that I would never have gotten if I had chosen one of the "stronger" houses. I think that I am a good example of ending up "where I belong."
I know that not everyone has a good rush experience and not everyone is willing to "settle" for a "weak" house. But I think that if they truly give it a chance, maybe they'll see that they DID end up where they belonged after all. And, as for the girls who fall through the cracks, most of them are picked up by COB or Snap-Bidding... I think that if you truly want to be part of a sorority, you can be. Even in the SEC. You just have to have an open mind.

GreenEyedLady 01-28-2002 08:39 PM

I don't understand why being in a smaller house would effect your chances to be homecoming queen. Am I dense? I guess I don't get the whole southern school thing. :confused:


Quote:

Originally posted by GammaPhiBabe
but I've come to realize that, while I was never going to be homecoming queen, I was given a world of opportunites that I would never have gotten if I had chosen one of the "stronger" houses. I think that I am a good example of ending up "where I belong."

amycat412 01-28-2002 08:44 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by GreenEyedLady
I don't understand why being in a smaller house would effect your chances to be homecoming queen. Am I dense? I guess I don't get the whole southern school thing. :confused:



Perception.

If weaker house has a perception as, let's say "the fat chicks" even though this is not true, or should not matter-- well, you can rest assured anyone from this house, no matter how qualified, will not be Homecoming Queen.

KillarneyRose 01-28-2002 09:14 PM

I've read in some posts that at some of the more competitive rush schools, the PNMs come into rush already having visited the campus and making a point of getting to know sorority members. Do you all think this is a bad thing?

As I mentioned in a long ago thread where I detailed my rush experience, I grew up very close to where I went to college and I knew ever since I started high school that I wanted to go there and the I wanted to join a sorority. ErikaXO, correct me if I'm wrong but you were in a similar situation when you started college, right? So to that end, I tailored my resume not only so that I would look good to the college admissions people but to the sororities as well. Also, I went to parties at the school my junior and senior years of high school so that I could become friendly with the Greeks and learn my way around the system a bit (disregard the fact that a 16/17 year old has NO BUSINESS at a fraternity party, ok? It's alright that I did it, but if either of my daughters attempts such a stunt they will be grounded until they're 30 ;) )

I feel that I started rush with a big advantage over most of the other PNM's; I was friendly with many sisters, I knew what the different houses were like in "real life" as opposed to the image they presented during rush and I knew enough about which sisters were involved in what non-Greek activities that I could ask what I felt to be intelligent questions. I didn't feel that I needed a two week rush period to learn where I belonged because I'd done a couple years of independant research.

So I guess what I'd like to know is does everyone think the advantage I gave myself was unfair to the other rushees or do you feel that "all's fair" in love and....um, rush?

And, regarding the Homecoming Queen question...
Remember, if a Homecoming Queen candidate is a member of a larger house, she has more people to campaign for her and, obviously, more people to vote for her!


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