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  #31  
Old 10-01-2009, 06:28 PM
Bella796 Bella796 is offline
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I COB'd so I got to know girls in different organizations and chose the one where I felt more at "home." However if I was going through recruitment with my 18 year old attitude, I often wonder if I would have chosen another house. I think it depends on the person and what they want (and their maturity level).
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  #32  
Old 10-01-2009, 06:45 PM
APhiAnna APhiAnna is offline
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One of my absolute favorite quotes I read on this board deals with this...I want to say it was 33girl but if not then I am sorry that I forgot who said it. It went: "Guys think they make the fraternity and girls think the sorority makes them."

Tiers for guys are just as established as tiers for girls on a year to year basis. But I feel like guys are infinitely more likely to join a lower tier house where they click with the guys and then work their butts off to turn it around. Whereas girls, even the ones who work hard for their sororities, don't really see it that way. At my alma mater, the fraternity tiers completely re-shifted in the 4 years I was there, while the sorority tiers didn't even budge. I think if girls took the "guy" mentality more often during rush, you would see more dynamic changes in sorority reputations.

I do not agree whatsoever with the statement that said that top tier chapters are less close, disorganized, etc. There are clicks and internal problems in EVERY sorority chapter over 7-8 members. There are "top tier" chapters with great sisterhoods and "bottom tier" chapters with terrible sisterhoods, so be careful making blanket statements. That is just as un-Panhellenic as making fun of "lower tier" houses.

And lastly, at my campus in the last few years there HAVE been many girls who have been in the position deciding between a top tier and a "lower tier". With top tier sororities required to make huge cuts early on, and enough legacies, recs and "high-school friends" who are going to make that first cut, cuts can be severe. We were always competitive in recruitment, and we had many girls who preffed our biggest competitors, but also many women that were cut by the other really competitive chapters. And I remember seeing our competitor's pledge classes and recognizing half the names, and for the other half I'd be like "Who is this girl? I don't even remember her coming through!" I even know of one girl that ended up at the "best" sorority, and she had been cut by every other sorority within the first few days except for the "worst"...and she was not a legacy and had no connections that I know of. I think the new release figures are making this phenomenon much more common than it used to be.

ETA: I am familiar enough with a couple west coast schools that had rush threads posted on this board, and PMed them (haha, I know everybody hates when people mention PMs) asking for the codes. The PNMs at these schools tended to have surprisingly varied rushes...being dropped from lower tier houses on the first day only to end up in "top tier" houses, preffing drastically different sororities, etc. So this is definitely a common thing at Pac 10 schools, but I can't say anything about other regions. I think it could probably ring true for SEC as well, but I am not that familiar with those campuses.

Last edited by APhiAnna; 10-01-2009 at 06:52 PM.
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  #33  
Old 10-01-2009, 08:27 PM
AnchorAlumna AnchorAlumna is offline
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I dunno.

At my SEC school, it's like the "tiers" are set in concrete reinforced by rebar and encased in steel. The top, middle, and lower tiers, with just a tiny bit of shifting within tiers, are the same now as they were in 1971.

It doesn't seem to matter what women do or achieve, they don't change.

And Panhellenic has traditionally been all about enforcing that. Informally, of course.
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  #34  
Old 10-01-2009, 09:03 PM
Ggirl617 Ggirl617 is offline
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while searching for the UF thread (i didn't find it) i found the controversial thread from bamadad with the PM about Dz. this sickened me. i know it is not recent and maybe shouldn't be brought up again but i am really appauled (sp?)
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  #35  
Old 10-01-2009, 10:03 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by Ggirl617 View Post
while searching for the UF thread (i didn't find it) i found the controversial thread from bamadad with the PM about Dz. this sickened me. i know it is not recent and maybe shouldn't be brought up again but i am really appauled (sp?)
We don't know what that particular poster who got on BamaDad's ass was smoking, but none of what she said was accurate (i.e. saying DZ was a teachers' sorority, etc).
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  #36  
Old 10-01-2009, 10:09 PM
oncegreek oncegreek is offline
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I looked up the "offending thread" and was, of course, appalled. Sickening! But there was something really off- not just off-putting- about it. You've heard of "drunk dialing"? Well, I suspect drunk posting, judging from all of the misspellings and grammatical errors. Also, the tone...I was half suspecting to hear about sequin pantyhose and "that one thing" from the poster addressing bamadad.
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  #37  
Old 10-01-2009, 11:14 PM
UGAalum94 UGAalum94 is offline
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Originally Posted by AnchorAlumna View Post
I dunno.

At my SEC school, it's like the "tiers" are set in concrete reinforced by rebar and encased in steel. The top, middle, and lower tiers, with just a tiny bit of shifting within tiers, are the same now as they were in 1971.

It doesn't seem to matter what women do or achieve, they don't change.

And Panhellenic has traditionally been all about enforcing that. Informally, of course.
I thought this too about my SEC campus, but I'm realizing it might not be the case. One group that was bottom tier when I was in school is solidly middle now, I think. And there's been some shifting in terms of the popularity of some of the middle and upper tier groups.

I think a lot of it has to do with changes at UGA. I think high achieving suburban Atlanta public school kids are playing a much bigger role in the system than they used to, and they elevated some groups that were middle when I was there and some of the really southern traditional groups suffered a little. I'm not sure the mobility would have occurred without this big shift because of the HOPE grant. But I think a lot of the SEC schools are experiencing similar changes, if on a smaller scale. If you're pulling more out of state kids, they aren't going to have 20+ years of a group's bad hometown rep to deal with, IMO.

I think it's still hard to take a lower tier group and somehow turn things around in one four year window.

And anyway, even if your low tier is forever, it's probably still worth being a member.

On a different note: even if girls are preffing a low and a high group, I think the number who don't list the high group first are a small percentage. The decision might be, do I list and accept a low tier bid if I get it instead. But I don't think girls are saying with any frequency, "I'm turning down #1 for #15.

Last edited by UGAalum94; 10-02-2009 at 09:37 AM.
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  #38  
Old 10-01-2009, 11:47 PM
KSUViolet06 KSUViolet06 is offline
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I find that in some smaller Greek systems, the tier structure is much more fluid and a pledge class or 2 can really change things for a chapter.

I'm finishing up my grad degree at my undergrad alma mater so I have been here for awhile and I have seen one class change the reputation of a chapter dramatically (or better or worse).
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  #39  
Old 10-01-2009, 11:54 PM
AnchorAlumna AnchorAlumna is offline
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Originally Posted by UGAalum94 View Post
...anyway, even if your low tier is forever, it's probably still worth being a member...
Oh, I certainly agree with you. One thing I've learned as an alumna is that among alumnae, tiers don't matter. The important thing is that you're a member of a GLO, and share similar experiences.

Now, some here say that your choice of group determines who'll you'll associate with and how you'll be perceived. Granted, I can see this among certain folks in certain communities (think bluebloods of Birmingham, Mobile, Atlanta etc.) But not in my little city.
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  #40  
Old 10-02-2009, 12:26 AM
Denise_DPhiE Denise_DPhiE is offline
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I rushed three locals at my college. The "best" did not offer me a bid for membership which I was crushed for about a day or two then one of the other two did. They were the heavy, less attractive party girls. I loved what I saw but I didn't want to be in a local. Had I joined, I would have pledged a local hard then affiiliated with PSS a year later. Great group but at the time I would not have known that.

I wound up seeing three groups during expansion, our choices were DZ, DPhiE and AOII. We chose DPhiE. To some that might be insane but it was the right group meeting with the right reps from HQ/extension team. We clicked.

Would we have been better off with another group? We'll never know but we absolutely loved every minute of our undergrad (and for me alumna) careers.

You do have to look down the IIKA! (kidding)
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  #41  
Old 10-02-2009, 02:45 AM
BrandNewAdvisor BrandNewAdvisor is offline
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I pledged a low tier sorority and I have not regretted it.

When I joined my chapter it was generally regarded as the worst on campus. I joined during informal recruitment, this was after a formal recruitment where quota was in the mid 20s and my chapter took 1 new member. After the informal period the pledge class was at 5. Total was 50 and my chapter was at 25. All the other chapters were at or over total.

It was hard at first especially walking around in a bid day shirt and having friends make comments. I didn't understand because my experience with my sisters and my pledge class was the complete opposite of the stereotype. We were social, athletic (we were all involved with at least one sports team), and straight.

We were also motivated. A group of 10 of us (about half the chapter) were generally fed up with the crappy reputation. We had one or two mixers a semester when other sororities had that many a week. We also had business type meetings 3 to 5 nights a week (I'm not exaggerating). By my sophomore year my entire pledge class held offices and we were determined to change.

We graduated a lot of dead weight and didn't let anymore in. We looked for quality members not just numbers, sometimes at the dismay of our advisor and nationals. We made every effort to be social and social in an attractive way. There was one sister who continually acted inappropriately in social situations. Instead of letting her get away with it, we reported her butt to standards and got it taken care of. We made friends and joined other groups and clubs. We always spoke positively of the sorority in public and kept drama behind closed doors (something not done At All in the past).

I ran recruitment my junior year and had a good long chat with out recruitment advisor about how things got so bad and looked at where exactly things were going wrong.
Progress for us was having girls put us on the pref card at all. Generally when we were all that was left for a girl in recruitment she dropped. Our overlap was with the most popular chapter on campus and most girls suicided.

Long story short after much effort by my senior year we took quota plus, had mixers every other week. We handled business more efficiently and only had one or two business meetings a week. Only the people who needed to be there were and it helped with burnout. We were at 40 members the highest in 8 years. I visited campus the year after I graduated and was hanging out at my fiance's fraternity. I was asked if I belonged to a sorority by a freshmen and when I answered it was the first time it elicited a positive enthusatic response.

I just started advising at a chapter that is in a similar situation that mine was in and hopefully I can help them to turn it around. You just have to want it bad enough.

Your sorority experience is entirely what you make of it. Join the lower-tiered sorority and make it what you want it to be. Be willing to work and ask for help when you need it, from the national organization and from panhellenic.

Forgive the long post, this is a topic I feel really strongly about. If all those girls that suicided decided to join my chapter it would have never gotten as bad as it did and could have turned around so much faster.

Last edited by BrandNewAdvisor; 10-02-2009 at 02:50 AM.
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  #42  
Old 10-02-2009, 09:09 AM
DubaiSis DubaiSis is offline
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If all those girls that suicided decided to join my chapter it would have never gotten as bad as it did and could have turned around so much faster.
I don't necessarily agree with this. Although I definitely have said similar things here, the fact is it takes a lot of work to make those kinds of changes, and some girls just don't want to do the work.

During formal rush at the small house I ended up pledging I was told pretty much straight up, "we're small, but you can take on a leadership role much sooner with us" and that part is definitely true. I wish the smaller houses would be more straight forward in acknowledging their size. It will turn off some girls but might turn on the lightbulb for girls who might see the value in the smaller group. The girls aren't blind so you might as well just address the situation.
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  #43  
Old 10-02-2009, 09:46 AM
UGAalum94 UGAalum94 is offline
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Oh, I certainly agree with you. One thing I've learned as an alumna is that among alumnae, tiers don't matter. The important thing is that you're a member of a GLO, and share similar experiences.

Now, some here say that your choice of group determines who'll you'll associate with and how you'll be perceived. Granted, I can see this among certain folks in certain communities (think bluebloods of Birmingham, Mobile, Atlanta etc.) But not in my little city.
I agree with the second paragraph too, but I also wonder as the chapters get bigger and bigger if it even matters in the places where I thought it used to. It's also been pointed out that if the factors are in place for you to get offered a bid to a chapter that we think of as "blueblood", you probably don't need to even rush to keep associating with them.

I think this old row-y kind of mindset remains more prevalent in fraternities since they don't have quota. A kid grows up in that blueblood world, goes to a certain set of private schools, goes off to a big public university but joins a really elite/elitist group, goes back to reclaim social position in hometown. If you take a pledge class of 60-80 every year and their are multiple blueblood groups, how elite can you really claim to me?
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  #44  
Old 10-02-2009, 09:57 AM
BlueCarnation BlueCarnation is offline
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When I joined my sorority, I had some clue about who was considered "top tier" but I just wanted to be in a sorority and I preffed at the ones where I liked the girls. Looking back now, I guess my chapter would have been considered in the "lower tier," but I certainly didn't think so. We had leaders on Panhel, we were a big house, we won a lot of campus awards, and we had lots of fun parties. And we had a very close sisterhood. From what I hear now, we are considered one of the "top tier" on campus and the houses that I would have considered "top" are now "lower." It seems like it changes every year. It's so hard to keep track, and frankly I don't think it should matter.

Like others have said, I guess it depends on why you're joining a sorority. You make the experience what it is. And what may be "top" on your campus may not be elsewhere.
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  #45  
Old 10-02-2009, 11:05 AM
blueberrymuffin blueberrymuffin is offline
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I would like to share with you an experience I had with a "lower tier" chapter. I just transferred to a big state university as a junior and a new colony was recruiting for its first new member class. There was talk in the dorm that all the sororities made quota in formal recruitment except one and that one was a "lower tier" chapter. I thought it might be a good idea to see if this chapter would be interested in me so I spoke to a woman in Greek Life about this and she said she would contact this chapter and see if they would be interested in talking to me. I told her I did not expect them to just give me a bid but just meet with me and see if we would be a good fit for each other. They never got back to me and I joined the new colony. I am very happy being a new member of the colony and don't know or care what "tier" we are in because I really like the other new members and we are all very excited about the future of the colony but I just wonder why this "lower tier" chapter didn't even think they should even talk to me.
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