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Old 07-06-2009, 04:41 PM
DartmouthPanhel DartmouthPanhel is offline
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Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 81
I just put about 18 months of grueling effort into running extension for Dartmouth College (for NPC at least, it's called extension not expansion).

I would definitely echo what everyone has said about the time effort and stress involved with starting a new chapter. Also, as a founding sister, you may not actually get to see the fruits of your labors. In many NPC systems, it take a group a solid 3+ years to truly get settled into campus life. While your hard work will hopefully benefit the campus and generations of women to come, you may not see that all come to fruition during your collegiate tenure.

For NPC, you do not get to "pick" the new sorority for your campus if you go through general extension. I described it many times as a recruitment process--both parties have input. Your campus will need to invite all 26 groups, and then learn about them, invite them for formal presentations and then extend a single invitation (and hope the group accepts). Not all 26 will even send information, sometimes groups that send information will not accept an invitation to present. At any given time, most sororities have already committed to colonizations and they need to assess what they can realistically give (even giving formal presentations is a drain on resources as it generally requires high-ranking fraternity staff and a significant financial cost).

You SHOULD NOT go into extension looking/hoping/needing a specific group. If you are, ask yourself why? What do you really know about that group? Do you really want extension?

An alternative route for extension, that works well if there are questions in your panhellenic community about student interest in a new sorority, is to form an interest group first. The interest group can either help with the formal extension, or can function as a local sorority until it chooses to affiliate nationally. Again, even when an interest group looks to affiliate with a NPC group, the won't necessarily get to say "I only want group XYZ".

If your CPH (college panhellenic) voted down extension, there is probably a reason. Ask to meet with them (or with a specific extension committee if there is one) and figure out their concerns. Most often, a CPH will vote down extension because it feels that the panhellenic community would suffer. Often they think (based on extensive numerical data) that the new group would either fail to thrive, or would cause another group to suffer. It is their responsibility to protect the panhellenic community as a whole. Those reasons are hard to argue with, but you can ask the CPH if you have check in following the next recruitment to see if things are looking more hopeful. If the reasons are more vague, or don't have the numbers to support them, you might be able to make a case. Read up on NPC recruitment and extension, and prepare a strong case for why a new group is needed and will be successful. Ask if you can present at a CPH meeting and be prepared to answer questions. At the very least, know that you've laid the groundwork for future efforts.

My campus has been, according to our recruitment data, ready for extension for a while, but it was still a difficult process. It also required hours and hours put in by women who were already affiliated. I formed an extension committee whose members probably put in over 100+ hours, and it was for a group that they weren't going to be in. You can't found a sorority on your own, and you need to make sure you have the support behind you.

If you have any questions about formal NPC extension, I'm glad to answer!
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