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Old 06-23-2016, 09:29 AM
oldalum oldalum is offline
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Rec Dilemma

I have read this site for years, but until now I didn't feel the need to set up an account and post. I apologize in advance for the length of my post, but feel that I should give an accurate background story.
I live in a small city about 45 minutes from a large SEC school. My organization has a chapter at the SEC school. I was not a member of that particular chapter. The chapter is not an "old" chapter, but also isn't brand new. Because of this, it isn't one that PNM's discuss frequently. The chapter is strong. They are very involved, make quota, have great grades, etc. BUT they aren't considered one of the old, "elite" chapters on campus. Very few of the girls in my city actually end up pledging the chapter, they usually end up in another house. Because of this, the alumnae presence for my organization is very small in my area. There are a couple of us here that are in contact with our state officers, and we are usually the ones that write recs for our area.
My daughter attends a small, private school in our city. Each year several of the girls go through recruitment at the SEC school. Each year I am contacted by many of the girls to write recs for my organization. I am always happy to help, because I usually know them or their families personally.
The issue that I am having is with one PNM. On paper, this girl has everything that a chapter would want. She has great grades, was very involved, has leadership experience, is from a prominent family, and is a cute girl. It's what isn't on the paper that is concerning. Her reputation in the area leaves a lot to be desired.
Normally I would have no problem giving her a "not recommended" rec to the chapter. However, knowing that I am probably the only alumnae from my organization that she knows, she would be able to figure out why she wouldn't have gotten an invitation back from my organization during rush. To complicate things further, her aunt is involved in another organization and is very prominent in town.
My dilemma lies with my own daughter who will be going through rush in two years. I'm afraid that if this comes out, she will have issues when it's her turn to go through rush. Her aunt is known around town as being a busy body and can be petty at times. My husband says for me to give her a neutral recommendation, and not to say anything negative because these things have a way of coming out in small towns. I am conflicted, because I don't want the girl in my organization. Chances are, she'll be invited to join one of the other, more established groups anyway.
Any advice?

Last edited by oldalum; 06-24-2016 at 08:33 AM.
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Old 06-23-2016, 09:41 AM
33girl 33girl is offline
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There are MANY reasons why she might not get an invite back from the chapter - especially with RFM. Even if you wrote the most glowing rec ever, there could be lots and lots of other girls with equally glowing recs. Say the RFM figures allow them to invite 500 girls back - she could be #501.

Unless the chapter is completely in the toilet, has abysmal return rates and is compelled to invite EVERYONE back every round just to fill a party, which doesn't sound like the case, there is no way her invitation or lack of same can be "traced" back to you.

My guess is that this is all a moot point and the sororities already have this girl's number. Plus - isn't it on the late side to be asking for recs?
It is all 33girl's fault. ~DrPhil
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Old 06-23-2016, 09:45 AM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is offline
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Seriously, you are in a pickle. Could you write a neutral rec and then call the chapter's membership advisor and tell her your conflict? I know in my capacity as membership advisor or general advisor that I have stepped in in similar cases and protected the anonymity of the alumna-even when I did not know them personally. But you are trusting someone you do not know. I will PM you.
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Old 06-23-2016, 11:01 AM
AZTheta AZTheta is offline
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^^^ what FSUZeta said (in the 2nd paragraph).

There is a way to say things in a phone call. AND I suspect this special snowflake will not be interested in the chapter the OP belongs to, when all is said and done.
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Old 06-23-2016, 06:35 PM
AnchorAlumna AnchorAlumna is offline
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Here's what I do.
First, put nothing on paper. Write the rec, and attach a Post-It note that says "CALL ME FIRST" with your name and phone number.
When the adviser calls, tell her whatever you need to tell her to discourage them from giving her a bid. Make sure you're alone and in a room with the doors closed! Tell your daughter nothing about how you felt about this girl. Tell your husband nothing. You don't want anybody "leaking" that you sent a No rec on the girl. And keep your own mouth shut!

I seriously doubt that the Fab Girl will even consider your chapter since it's not one of the old and favored status groups.

If anything comes up, you can honestly say, "Of course I made sure my sorority had a rec! but these girls....I don't have a vote, I only send them my recommendation."

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Old 06-24-2016, 01:01 AM
DubaiSis DubaiSis is offline
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You've got some very skilled rec-writers here and I'd trust them. But seriously, a rec at an SEC school is one among thousands they get every year. Seriously, they probably get 2000+ recs. Your very good (or very bad in this case) rec I think would be appreciated but would not be a tipping point in either direction.
"Traveling - It leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. ~ Ibn Battuta
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Old 06-24-2016, 02:53 AM
Sororitysock Sororitysock is offline
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Since young women from your daughter's high school attend this college and join sororities each year, chances are the members of those "better known" chapters already know about this PNM and her reputation. This could narrow her choices among those chapters very quickly and leave her with only the lesser known/desirable chapters like your own who may be unaware of her reputation. Under these circumstances she may be willing to reconsider those chapters she would not have considered initially. It is your responsibility to your sorority to make sure they know about her. I'd do what Anchor Alumna said. Keep it as private as possible but do not leave anything to chance. This is one of the reasons our rec systems were created.
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Old 06-24-2016, 03:31 AM
Hartofsec Hartofsec is offline
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Originally Posted by AnchorAlumna View Post
Tell your daughter nothing about how you felt about this girl. Tell your husband nothing. You don't want anybody "leaking" that you sent a No rec on the girl. And keep your own mouth shut!

And after you have the advice you need, you might consider removing much of the background from your post, just in case the PNM or her mom trip across this site. There may be enough detail that they would recognize your description.
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Old 06-24-2016, 07:40 AM
oldalum oldalum is offline
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From the advise I have been given, I feel like I will write a neutral rec and give the membership advisor a telephone call to explain the situation. From reading on this site I knew to purposely change some of the specifics in my original post so that it wouldn't be identifying. The changes I made don't impact the situation, but help to protect my identity. I will leave the post as it is, just to help anybody else in a similar situation. Thank you for your help!!!
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