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Old 08-16-2012, 08:44 PM
GPhiBLtColonel GPhiBLtColonel is offline
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My son's fraternity recruitment story

So, for years on Greekchat, I have voraciously read and sought out all the Recruitment Stories my old eyes would allow me to read. I admit that I harbored a teensy bit of jealousy whenever I pored over these adventures because I figured I would never be able to pen such a recruitment story of “my” own because I am the mother of two boys.

My oldest son is a junior at the Air Force Academy, my husband’s alma mater. As my handle indicates, I am a retired USAF LtCol – served 22 years active duty in Intelligence, primarily SpecOps – and a proud Distinguished Graduate of Southern Cal’s AFROTC program. How could I not be thrilled that my oldest was going to also be in the Air Force? True, he did get a full ride to USC’s AFROTC program but a Congressional appointment to the Air Force Academy was very hard to pass up. But no Greek connections whatsoever, unless I could set him up with collegiate members of my sorority up in Denver and Boulder!

My youngest son was going to go to a civilian university - some of you may have seen a thread I already posted earlier and know which university its so just keep it to yourselves for the time being please! Yes, I really wanted him to rush but never said anything to him about doing so because both my boys seemed to always be baffled and maybe even a bit turned off by all the sorority and panhellenic volunteering I did... like they never wanted anything to do with being Greek!

Happily, my son informed me he was going to rush AND he wanted to do some summertime fraternity rush events at his college. Yay!

After meeting up with all the fraternities who participated in Orientation (not all 16 were there unfortunately), he had several favorites – my husband and I did too.

At my son’s university, as I said, there are 16 fraternities. Since it was summertime rush, he was focusing on just half of those. He simply could not do things with all of them.

I have given names to these fraternities based on my son’s affinity for golf – eg they are all well-known golf companies:

Bobby Jones
Gamma Phi Beta
USC Trojans -- #1!
Don't blame me - I voted for the War Hero and the Hockey Mom
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Old 08-16-2012, 08:49 PM
carnation carnation is offline
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:02 PM
justgo_withit justgo_withit is offline
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Go Air Force! Is he doing AFROTC as well?

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Old 08-16-2012, 09:16 PM
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SWTXBelle SWTXBelle is offline
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Gamma Phi Beta
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Old 08-16-2012, 09:23 PM
AGDLynn AGDLynn is offline
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Wondered what you were doing with your free time!

Best wishes!!

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Old 08-17-2012, 09:07 AM
LaneSig LaneSig is offline
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Good luck to your son!
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Old 08-17-2012, 02:00 PM
GPhiBLtColonel GPhiBLtColonel is offline
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OOPS! I forgot one other fraternity - which I will dub Cleveland. Sorry about that!

My son is not doing AFROTC - he likes the military (he better! LOL!) but he is definitely not "that" type. His major is a specialized concentration within the business school.

So, prior to the “official” start of Orientation in mid-June, my son was able to link up with a couple of members of BRIDGESTONE whom he had already befriended because two of its members are from our high school and hometown. They went to grab a bite to eat and just hang out. My son says he likes these guys and would be comfortable as a brother. I was happy to hear that because of what I already knew about this group, plus I knew one of those hometown guys and really like him and his folks!

Once Orientation began, we visited each of the fraternity tables that had been set up (sadly, not all of the groups showed up). My son signed up wherever there was a sheet that asked for potential rushees’ information.

My husband and I were VERY impressed with TAYLORMADE and would have been thrilled if our son got a bid from them. We loved all they stood for and were very impressed with the chapter GPA! Ironically, I was a little sister at my alma mater’s chapter of TAYLORMADE back in the day. One of the brothers at orientation was even from our hometown!

We also visited with the NIKE brothers and my son said he liked them a lot. He said they seemed down to earth and an easy going group of guys.

There were four TITLEIST brothers at Orientation that were extremely friendly and looked like they were a lot of fun. Their trifold board was slightly unimpressive (hand lettered) but at least they were at Orientation and had a display! Since it wasn’t on their trifold board, I asked the typical “mom” question – eg what was the chapters GPA? The guys started hemming and hawing and shuffling their feet and finally said they tried to keep it up to about a 2.9…oh well, they did look like fun bunch of guys. My son later commented that he liked them and would probably have fun as a brother there but he was concerned that maybe they partied too much. (I looked at my son in awe – did he really say that? I was pleasantly surprised and impressed at his observation!)

Side Note: GPA is very important for my husband and I because my son has to get/keep a 3.0 GPA for the academic scholarships he was awarded by the university.

We again visited with the BRIDGESTONE brothers table and reaffirmed that they were a great group of guys. The chapter had a budding reputation on campus because they were new and they also have a good chapter GPA. They were getting a brand new house that was going to be in a primo location on campus so that was also very cool, in my son’s eyes.

Speaking of houses, not that it was a huge factor in my son’s impressions of each chapter, but he did feel strong enough to comment on the various physical structures and how impressive – or not – each was. He was eager to be able to live in a fraternity house one day! He really liked the BOBBY JONES house and was hopeful he would be able to link up with these guys during the summer to do some rush events. He also liked the CALLAWAY house and we reminded him that our next door neighbor’s son is an enthusiastic member of CALLAWAY (a recent alum) and would definitely help with a CALLAWAY reference, as would one of my GPhiB sister’s hubby.

After Orientation, we set about looking to see which fraternities had online reference forms and if we knew anyone who would agree to help write one for my son.

I was humbled to have one of our very own GC members (we’d linked up earlier discussing politics) volunteer to do a reference for his fraternity, NIKE! That made my son very happy because NIKE was one of my son’s favorites so far!

One of my pledge sisters is married to a brother in MIZUNO and he did on online recommendation to his fraternity and he sent us the very nice thank you email he got in response. That excited my son because MIZUNO is typically one of the top fraternities in terms of GPA on campus plus they have won the top award within their own fraternity for two consecutive years.

My sister (real/bio) also volunteered an old close friend of hers to do a reference for CLEVELAND. Again, this made my son happy because he was vying for one of CLEVELAND’s freshman scholarships and he liked the brothers he had talked to already. He also said he liked their house!
Gamma Phi Beta
USC Trojans -- #1!
Don't blame me - I voted for the War Hero and the Hockey Mom

Last edited by GPhiBLtColonel; 08-17-2012 at 02:01 PM. Reason: spelling and grammar!
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Old 08-17-2012, 03:50 PM
FSUZeta FSUZeta is offline
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Can't wait to read more! Good luck to GPhiBLtColSon!
I live in Fantasyland and I have waterfront property.
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:09 PM
DubaiSis DubaiSis is offline
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I'm picturing the scenario where the NPC sororities have an open house, prior to rush, where the moms are there and allowed to ask questions. Talk about a mayhem recruitment! I'm laughing out loud picturing a variety of scenarios, including a Jersey Shore style cat fight. I'm also picturing the made for TV movie that only we would enjoy where the first round of cuts in rush are based on how well liked the Moms are.
"Traveling - It leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller. ~ Ibn Battuta
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:13 PM
UGAalum94 UGAalum94 is offline
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I'm glad you are posting this! We don't hear enough about the boys. Is recruitment over for him or is it still going on in real time?
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Old 08-17-2012, 08:53 PM
GPhiBLtColonel GPhiBLtColonel is offline
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One of the things I learned in doing my research about the IFC at my son’s university, 60% of the new members were early bids. I had no idea! What a change from sorority recruitment!!

Anyway, the very first summer rush event my son wanted to do was right here in town. For logistics only, I drove my son over an hour north to meet up with some actives of TAYLORMADE who were congregating at a brother’s house to all go together to attend a major league baseball game that evening. Since the MLB stadium was a mere 20 minutes from our home, my son agreed that I would just pick him up after the game outside the stadium. Two girlfriends came with me and we got to the bar/grill across the street from the stadium during the 7th inning – we had some yummy BBQ and a couple of cold brews and got to see the rest of the game on all the TVs in the place. My son was very indulgent as all three of us moms gently grilled him on the drive home about how things had gone. He said he REALLY – repeat REALLY - liked these guys. Remember this was the fraternity that had so impressed my husband and I during Orientation. So we were thrilled to hear my son’s comments. The game was on a Saturday and in Monday’s mail we get a letter with a brochure and – having never seen a fraternity bid before – I crazily jumped around excitedly thinking it was a bid. Sadly, it wasn’t…just a “we really really really like you" letter. My son was confident a bid would be forthcoming.

The following weekend after my son had been begging and pleading all week to be allowed to drive five hours away to his university for some summer rush events there and at another location not far from the university where a minor league team had a home game, my husband and I relented and said OK. I had a bit of trepidation about him doing that long drive solo, but my husband reassured me our son was a safe driver so off our son went. He followed our pre-drive instructions and texted us every time he stopped just so we would be reassured he was where he was supposed to be. (I have watched waaaaay too many episodes of Criminal Minds, I guess!) He was going to stay at the university with his fall roomie who was taking summer classes. BTW, his future roomie had already accepted an early bid from MIZUNO.

My son had made arrangements to do things – eg “hang out” - with guys from BRIDGESTONE and PING and he was going to do an actual “official” summer rush event with NIKE. He texted and called me to share his feelings and impressions throughout the weekend and when he finally came home, he had a real live actual bid from NIKE and he said he was hoping to get one from PING. He really liked the NIKE guys and felt like it was such a good fit for him. But he said he also really liked the PING guys, although he did remark, “They are really country!” Which he liked but it was funny to hear him comment on it! BRIDGESTONE and TAYLORMADE faded into second place behind NIKE and PING, although he said he still really liked them.
Gamma Phi Beta
USC Trojans -- #1!
Don't blame me - I voted for the War Hero and the Hockey Mom

Last edited by GPhiBLtColonel; 08-17-2012 at 08:56 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old 08-17-2012, 09:40 PM
AXOmom AXOmom is offline
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Frist off, as a UofO Duck alum and I'm required by law to root for Nike (or they will revoke my diploma), so GO NIKE!

Second, as a little tangent - I grew up in Denver and one of our favorite things to do was drive out of town guests and family members down to the Springs to see the cadets march in to lunch. I never thought watching people go to lunch could give you chills, but it does.
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Old 08-18-2012, 02:12 PM
ibis ibis is offline
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Although I was a short time greek member,(my chapter closed as a colony), I am trying to catch up with some of the guys I knew way back when and found this site.

It is enjoyable to see greek life is still going on and fine young people still looking at going greek.

I hope your son finds the right fit for him.

Good luck to him.
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Old 08-18-2012, 10:06 PM
GPhiBLtColonel GPhiBLtColonel is offline
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Final update

Sorry – meant to post earlier but spent most of the day getting the Gamma Phi Beta house where I am the House Corporation Board president ready for move-in.

So, about 2-3 weeks passed after my son returned from his fraternity rush weekend. He had hoped to do one more fraternity rush weekend but sadly he had to have his wisdom teeth pulled and the only slot available coincided with activities he was dying to do with BOBBY JONES, TITLEIST and PING.

So once he felt better after the wisdom teeth extraction, he got busy texting and facebooking and setting up dates to meet up with other fraternity guys once we moved him in on campus. We made all the moving preps which seemed to mainly encompass clothes shopping. I always got a kick out of the detailed outfits the girls planned for recruitment attire but OMG, my son is such a clothes hound, it seemed like we did more clothes shopping than dorm room shopping! We had to get just the right blazer, slacks, shorts, ties, shirts, loafers, game day loafers, sandals, shorts, fishing shirts, tees etc. A few days before we were to depart, my son got a letter in the mail saying he was a finalist for the CLEVELAND scholarship and he was invited to a dinner at the CLEVELAND fraternity house the Tuesday after move-in. The three winners would be announced at this dinner. My son really liked the CLEVELAND brothers he had met and talked to so far, so this was well-received news.

Finally, last Saturday, we made the five hour trek to college and got my son moved in. My husband and I were very impressed when two NIKE brothers showed up and helped us with some of the many car-to-3rd floor dorm room trips we had to make. We could see how my sons interacted with them and how at ease he seemed to be. Plus these guys were very easy going and friendly, respectful and funny. As soon as they left, we both said to our son – why don’t you just accept the NIKE bid? You seem like such a great fit! (HAHA – us parents know everything, right!?)

But our son was eager to connect more with PING, TAYLORMADE, BOBBY JONES, CALLAWAY, MIZUNO, BRIDGESTONE and TITLEIST and see if he could also fit in with them. He kept us posted each day about what he was doing and sadly for him because he had such high hopes, CALLAWAY and BOBBY JONES dropped from his radar screen because they were reportedly on social probation. And while he still liked TAYLORMADE and BRIDGESTONE, he liked NIKE and PING just a bit better – he said he felt more at home with the latter two. He was also having fun hanging with the brothers of TITLEIST, but finally decided that the feelings he first had at Orientation were accurate – they seemed to party a lot. So TITLEIST was out of the picture now too. After the scholarship dinner at CLEVELAND (he did not win, but - as he remarked – it was honor to be considered), he said they guys were really cool there and he liked them and their house. But he was just feeling like time was winding down to when he would have to make a decision – early signing day was fast approaching. I was very impressed at how he made his decision – while he never got an early bid from PING, he felt like he might if he went thru formal recruitment. But he had the bid in hand from NIKE and it had been one of his very favorites all along, he figured that a possible bid from PING would not really change things. So he called to tell us he was going to accept his bid from NIKE! My husband and I were thrilled!

We can now announce that our son is a very happy and proud new member of NIKE….

......also known as……

ALPHA TAU OMEGA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PS He is at Mississippi State!
Gamma Phi Beta
USC Trojans -- #1!
Don't blame me - I voted for the War Hero and the Hockey Mom

Last edited by GPhiBLtColonel; 08-18-2012 at 10:08 PM. Reason: grammar and spelling
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Old 08-18-2012, 10:39 PM
amanda6035 amanda6035 is offline
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Yay for him! Congrats!
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