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  #1  
Old 07-06-2018, 08:41 AM
naraht naraht is offline
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When did rec's become a thing?

When did recomendations especially at the "the rushee isn't supposed to see them" become a thing in the NPC?

Or to put more succinctly when would they have been suggested to a young lady wishing to join at U of Alabama?
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Old 07-06-2018, 08:44 AM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is online now
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Recs have always been a thing-at least for those sororities that require a rec before a girl can be pledged. Having a Rushee see her rec would be like a prospective employee listening in when the HR person calls his/her references.
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  #3  
Old 07-06-2018, 10:01 AM
NYCMS NYCMS is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FSUZeta View Post
Recs have always been a thing-at least for those sororities that require a rec before a girl can be pledged. Having a Rushee see her rec would be like a prospective employee listening in when the HR person calls his/her references.
Yes...and the comparison to a job reference is perfect - a rec is an endorsement for membership and I don't think anyone would go for a job interview without referrals. Many schools require a rec in order to pledge a girl. It also helps a chapter 'get to know' a girl prior to rush so they at least have some idea of who you are.

And for competitive Greek systems, like in the SEC at schools like Alabama and Ole Miss and even other regions with competitive systems, they've always been "in" - you really rush at your own risk without recs, whether it was decades ago or today.

Last edited by NYCMS; 07-06-2018 at 10:44 AM.
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  #4  
Old 07-06-2018, 11:02 AM
naraht naraht is offline
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OK, to be more clear, I completely agree that recs have been private for a while, but for Always?

Does the concept of expecting that rushees for the NPC sororities have recs go back to the founding of the NPC in 1902? And if not, did it start pre World War II?

For that matter, when did the members of the NPC go to the concept of girls pretty much rush all of the sororities as a group (as opposed to the NIC and NPHC which aren't anywhere near that concept)
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Old 07-06-2018, 11:11 AM
AZTheta AZTheta is offline
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Recommendations have been a "thing" (not how I would put it, exactly), going back to at least the 1940s when my mother was enrolled at UC Berkeley. Probably even prior to that date. Pretty much. I knew I needed recommendations and I got them when I decided to go through rush. Actually had a couple of alumnae in my area contact me after I registered, wanting to meet me and interview me so they could write for me. Some variation of that process is ongoing today. Alumnae want to help actives select the best members for their chapters. Hence, recommendations.

If you're that interested, naraht, perhaps you can contact NPC and its member chapters to get a definitive answer. There's a wide gap between your asking about the NPC in general, and one university (Alabama) specifically. I *seem* to recall seeing a recommendation from the early 1900s (more like a formal letter of introduction) when I visited our archives, but don't quote me on that, because I can't remember what I had for dinner last night.

The benefits of a recommendation for a prospective member are numerous. I'd add to the excellent posts above: a rec permits the chapter to learn about a woman in advance of the pressure of pre-rush work week as well as during the week of rush. It speaks to her interests, which are invaluable for the chapter in matching her to actives who can converse and put her at ease. It speaks to her character and helps her to stand out in the sea of faces.

Just read your follow up post while composing this, and now you're turning in a totally different direction. Have you read Bound By A Mighty Vow? It is about the founding of women's fraternities and it will answer many of your questions.

Okay that's enough out of me.
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  #6  
Old 07-06-2018, 12:02 PM
naraht naraht is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZTheta View Post
Recommendations have been a "thing" (not how I would put it, exactly), going back to at least the 1940s when my mother was enrolled at UC Berkeley. Probably even prior to that date. Pretty much. I knew I needed recommendations and I got them when I decided to go through rush. Actually had a couple of alumnae in my area contact me after I registered, wanting to meet me and interview me so they could write for me. Some variation of that process is ongoing today. Alumnae want to help actives select the best members for their chapters. Hence, recommendations.

If you're that interested, naraht, perhaps you can contact NPC and its member chapters to get a definitive answer. There's a wide gap between your asking about the NPC in general, and one university (Alabama) specifically. I *seem* to recall seeing a recommendation from the early 1900s (more like a formal letter of introduction) when I visited our archives, but don't quote me on that, because I can't remember what I had for dinner last night.

The benefits of a recommendation for a prospective member are numerous. I'd add to the excellent posts above: a rec permits the chapter to learn about a woman in advance of the pressure of pre-rush work week as well as during the week of rush. It speaks to her interests, which are invaluable for the chapter in matching her to actives who can converse and put her at ease. It speaks to her character and helps her to stand out in the sea of faces.

Just read your follow up post while composing this, and now you're turning in a totally different direction. Have you read Bound By A Mighty Vow? It is about the founding of women's fraternities and it will answer many of your questions.

Okay that's enough out of me.
I'm not doubting that there are certainly advantages to Recommendations, what I wondering about is when the NPC Sororities *formalized* the concept.

I agree that asking about the more general change to Rushing all the sororities as a group is off topic...
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  #7  
Old 07-06-2018, 12:37 PM
DaffyKD DaffyKD is offline
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I think recs were more prevalent at all schools when I went through rush. The chapter had a rush committee who would send out recs to an alumnae association near the rushee's residence. The associations had a rec committee who would contact schools and their friends to find out about the young lady. I had no idea that recs were needed until I was on the other side. The chapter would work on getting them, the girls didn't have to secure them. At that time, there weren't 1000's of girls going through rush, our pledge classes were less than 25. Today, my chapter does not require them. The alumnae chapter no longer has a recommendation committee. If a girl contacts us, we ask a member to meet her if no one in the area knows her personally. With the privacy rules, talking to the schools is no longer an option.

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  #8  
Old 07-06-2018, 03:06 PM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is online now
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Originally Posted by naraht View Post
what I wondering about is when the NPC Sororities *formalized* the concept...
Why? Why do you want to know?
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  #9  
Old 07-06-2018, 03:55 PM
naraht naraht is offline
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Originally Posted by FSUZeta View Post
Why? Why do you want to know?
General curiousity about the history of Fraternities and Sororities.

Don't understand how it would hurt anyone...
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  #10  
Old 07-06-2018, 04:06 PM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is online now
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I don't recall anyone saying it hurt someone. Sometimes your questions border on private membership information, though I believe it is unintentional.
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  #11  
Old 07-06-2018, 04:49 PM
Just interested Just interested is offline
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I actually think this is an interesting question from a historical perspective. I would assume, that in the late 19th Century and early 20th Century as fraternities for women were growing, women would write letters of recommendations for their friends and family that were going to their college or another where they had a chapter to introduce them for membership. At some point, a National organization, maybe one at first, decided it would be a good idea to have a form for that purpose. The idea caught on and by at least the 1930's references were the norm. No facts, just my assumptions. They are still very important in areas where tradition is strong. In Dallas, we still have our Reference Boards who oversee all references that leave Dallas.
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  #12  
Old 07-06-2018, 07:03 PM
Titchou Titchou is offline
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As for Delta Gamma, we have always -since founding in 1873 - had a member 'sponsor" potential members...and we still use the term "sponsor form" and not recommendation. The founders decided this early on and we still require them. NPC does not have any formal requirement for recommendations so it's up to each of the 26 member groups whether or not they require them. Whether any particular campus suggests they help is another question altogether.
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  #13  
Old 07-06-2018, 08:00 PM
amIblue? amIblue? is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FSUZeta View Post
I don't recall anyone saying it hurt someone. Sometimes your questions border on private membership information, though I believe it is unintentional.
Honestly, I think many (if not most) of his questions border on being “none of your business.”
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  #14  
Old 07-09-2018, 04:44 PM
g41965 g41965 is offline
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Recs

I don't agree, there is a place for genuine historical curiosity here. Fraternities and Sororities have long held an important place inAmerican and Canadian culture. I don't think inquiring about the history of recs intrudes on modern day membership selection.
Port ant place in
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  #15  
Old 07-09-2018, 05:17 PM
TriDeltaSallie TriDeltaSallie is offline
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Tri Delta Recommendations History

Okay, I’m a sorority history dork so this question intrigued me. I pulled out my History of Delta Delta Delta 1888-1988 to see what it might have to say. Here is a relevant section (page 420):

-----------------------------------

Tri Delta’s recommendation system has always had two main purposes: to provide collegiate chapters with information on rushees which is not available from other sources; and to recognize the concept of lifetime membership by giving alumnae a role in the membership selection process.

At first, the system consisted entirely of word-of-mouth recommendations or, as the Fraternity expanded, some letters of recommendation. The supplement to the Constitution in 1918 stated, “no student shall be considered for membership unless recommended and investigated.” However, no procedure was established to verify collegiate chapter compliance.

The 1928 Trieme contained a formal recommendation blank. A completed form on each pledge member was to be retained for two years in a chapter’s file. The 1931 Convention established the procedure for information cards to be filled out by a chapter’s rushing chairman and returned to alumnae recommenders within three weeks of the end of rush. The 1934 Governing Regulations included a new section on eligibility which stated, “A written recommendation properly filled in by alumna of Delta Delta Delta must be in the chapter files before a girl may be pledged.”

Between 1938 and 1940, the requirement developed that where there was an organized alliance, a rushee’s recommendation had to come from the alliance, not an individual. At the same time the state or regional system developed. The Trident, October 1940, contained the first listing of state and regional recommendation chairmen. The 1940-1942 Governing Regulations required that the recommendation for a rushee must be written by an individual alumna resident in the hometown and approved by the hometown alliance, if one existed. If no organized alumnae group existed in a rushee’s hometown, the state recommendation chairman would solicit recommendations from alumnae in the area and then process them back to the collegiate chapter.

------------------------------------------

It goes on from there, but that's the information about the early days. I would guess most NPC groups followed a similar trajectory, give or take some years. Recommendation was changed to reference in 1970.
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