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  #31  
Old 07-15-2014, 05:14 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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Originally Posted by shellylou View Post
I love it too! Change is mostly good but sometimes I wish the Greek world would take a little step back!
Yes. IMO a deferred rush -if only for a semester- would be beneficial for all. I can't even imagine being a young girl leaving home for the first time then going to what is often a VERY large campus and going through rush at the same time. Panhellenic could give a presentation during Freshman Orientation including the importance of a good academic record, getting involved with campus activities, and the like.

We didn't have to contend with "tent talk" as the only time we were all together at the same place and the same time was to pick up our envelopes. We got into our line, picked up our envelopes, and then pretty much stepped off by ourselves to see what was in them. I don't remember much talking at all. And of course the Pan Hellenic members distributing the envelopes were observing Silence.

I would say that most of us likely had an "image" of each of the six sororities by the time we went through rush as Sophomores. But I really don't remember much "trash talk" during rush. The increased formality of it probably set the tone.

Also, back at that time, our professors called us "Miss Smith, Miss Jones" and the like! The general expectation was that we were to act like grown-ups any time we were on campus.
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  #32  
Old 07-15-2014, 05:24 PM
Low D Flat Low D Flat is offline
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The general expectation was that we were to act like grown-ups any time we were on campus.
The funny flip side is that with parietal rules, they treated you as though you were still young teens living at home. College students are treated much more like adults today when it comes to their personal lives.
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  #33  
Old 07-15-2014, 05:52 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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Originally Posted by Low D Flat View Post
The funny flip side is that with parietal rules, they treated you as though you were still young teens living at home. College students are treated much more like adults today when it comes to their personal lives.
There was much discussion of en loco parentis at the state association of student governments. Mine was one of the most heavily "en loco" of all. Our curfew was 10:50PM except on Saturdays when we could sign out until 1AM. Or "Check out for the weekend" for home, of course. But it was very frequently not for home at all, as you might guess.

What was really ridiculous and which we resented mightily was having the same rules apply when we turned 21. Even if you were MARRIED you had to get permission from the Dean of Women to live with your husband! And it was often not forthcoming. I remember one woman in my Freshman dorm who was visibly pregnant who had not as yet received permission to live with her husband. She finally got it before she popped!

A couple of years later I talked with the Dean of Women about these antediluvian practices. Her story -and she stuck with it- was that there were those on the Board of Directors as well as big financial donors who insisted on them. Most of us couldn't wait to get out by graduation time!
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  #34  
Old 07-15-2014, 06:09 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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Back to my story!

Willa and I walked over to the large auditorium together from our dorm to place our final selections. By then Willa and I both knew that we had been to the Portia Preferential Party, but not the same one. Willa broke her "silence" with me and told me that she wanted us to be in the same pledge class, namely Portia's! And Portia was what she was going to rank first! She asked me what I was going to do. I told her that I was more confident in getting a bid from Bianca. Then she said, 'But which one do you really WANT?!!!" I told her that my heart had been really set on Portia all along from the very beginning. So she told me she HOPED I would rank Portia first. Willa met me outside to walk back and said, "Well.......?" I told her I had screwed up my courage and placed Portia first as that was where my heart was.

So we walked back to the dorm to wait until the next afternoon when the final bids or regrets would be delivered to our dorm. I didn't tell anyone else how I had ranked my pref bids.
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  #35  
Old 07-15-2014, 06:15 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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The next day was the looooongest day, but we were all certain to be in our dorm rooms during the afternoon when the envelopes would be delivered. The system in those days was a buzzer system which went into our rooms. A certain number of buzzes indicted a phone call, another pattern to come to the front desk, and so on. So we knew we would get a buzz to come to the front desk no matter what the outcome. We were also told that we wouldn't be buzzed until the person before us had left. We didn't know WHO would be delivering either a bid or a regret so of course were all looking out our windows. Willa and I were both on the back of the dorm so didn't have a good view of anything.

So we waited, and waited, and waited. Other girls were getting buzzed to come to the front desk, but neither of us did until the late afternoon. The girl on our hall who we both thought would be a Cleopatra did indeed get a Cleopatra bid and had already dyed her hair the lightest blond possible! A couple of Miranda bids had been delivered as well as one Beatrice and a Rosalind, both on the other side of the dorm. Both Willa and I were getting nervous, but we had been able to find out that bids were being delivered by an active member of each sorority. Or perhaps the regrets by Panhellenic representatives?

FINALLY Willa got a buzz and went down to get her envelope. I didn't have chance to find out her outcome as I soon got a buzz and several friends from my end of the dorm hall went down to the front desk with me.

So there was the envelope which I nervously opened. The first thing I saw was the Greek letter for the particular chapter giving me the bid and I saw XXX, which was the first letter of Bianca's Greek NPC name. But I soon recognized that it was the chapter designation for.............











Portia!!!

otherwise known as.....








the home of the Cardinal and Straw........And the signed Picasso poster.....







Chi Omega!!!!



And YES! Willa and I were to be pledge sisters!!!!

To be continued with our Bid Acceptance
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  #36  
Old 07-15-2014, 06:22 PM
AlphaXi_Husky AlphaXi_Husky is offline
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This is, hands down, one of the best recruitment stories I've ever read.

Can't wait to hear about Bid Acceptance!
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  #37  
Old 07-15-2014, 06:32 PM
SoClassic SoClassic is offline
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I've really enjoyed reading this story! Can't wait to read the rest!
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  #38  
Old 07-15-2014, 07:12 PM
Tulip86 Tulip86 is offline
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Loved reading this. Thank you so much for taking us back to your recruitment.
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  #39  
Old 07-15-2014, 08:46 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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Thanks so much for your kind comments! And now the conclusion:

It was with great excitement that Willa and I went over to the house that evening to accept our bids. No running in the streets! No frat boys holding cans of beer making their comments on our way over! Bid Acceptance was rather formal in dress, basically the same kinds of dresses we had worn to our pref parties. If I remember correctly, our pledge pins were pinned on us that night. And we were also given an owl lavalier which we were to wear with it. Also a name tag. We were instructed that we could wear our pledge pins only when wearing a skirt, but that we could wear our lavaliers any time. We were also given a long stemmed white carnation tied with the Chi Omega colors of Cardinal and Straw. Next came the Open House for Bid Acceptance.

All of us new pledges were lined up into a receiving line holding our carnations where we received congratulations for about two hours. All of the actives of all the sorority houses filed through and congratulated the members of each new pledge classes. And the members of all the fraternities dressed in suit and tie filed through to congratulate each of us. We were told to turn our cheek so it would land there for any kiss any of the males wanted to give us, including any boyfriends. Then of course non-Greek friends and some parents also came to give us their best wishes. Also some faculty members, probably one from each department on campus.

I was a bit apprehensive about Elizabeth coming through. She did and was as gracious and warm as always. I thanked her for all she had done for me, and that I greatly admired her sorority and that my decision had been a difficult one. We hugged each other and extended our best wishes to each other.

After everyone had left but before we had to go back to our respective dorms, several of the actives told me how pleasantly surprised they were to hear my name when it was called out (amidst screaming) as they had thought I would go Bianca. They knew that they had rushed me very hard and for a long time. I told them that Chi O was my favorite from the beginning and that in the end I had followed my heart. And THEN of course I heard about the mortification about our president's comments about my "pregnancy dress"! There was great anxiety on their side and mine about ensuing cuts. We could all laugh about it then but of course hadn't when it happened.

My pledge class was awesome with a larger number than usual because of the number of seniors who had graduated along with several who had graduated early. But quota was met. As I met them one by one, I discovered how delightful all my pledge sisters were. All four of the girls I had seen wearing their fraternity pins before the opening Open House for rush were now my sisters. I was in the wedding of one of them a couple of years later. My pledge sisters reflected the kind of diversity I had discovered among the actives during rush. Also, one of my pledge sisters was the other Sophomore chosen to participate in the formal welcome to the new Freshmen women of our school! She also had her long white dress ready! Little did either of us know that we would need that long white dress later on in the year!

Epilogue

We Chi Omegas continued to thrive, and many in my pledge class emerged as campus leaders. We again won the most outstanding sorority trophy and were tops in grades. I was elected student government secretary and the following year secretary of the XXX state association of student governments. Willa twisted my arm to accept the invitation to go through rush for Angel Flight where she was already a member, as were many other Chi Os. I did so reluctantly and actually was selected after several rounds. Willa also dragged me out of bed for the 7AM marching practices. Would she ever let up on me?!!! She also lived with me one summer at home when she got a summer job in the city where I lived. The Civil Rights Movement had come to the fore in our state and we Chi Omegas were split on the issue about 50/50 about my junior year. But we learned to disagree without being disagreeable about it and to not make it an issue with our sisterhood. My inspiring, incredible Pledge Trainer and one of her pledge sisters decided to both go into the Peace Corps after graduation. I had been seriously thinking about it for some time and decided to follow in their footsteps. I went through their rigorous selection process followed by an equally rigorous training and found my service there one of the most life-changing, challenging, and amazing experiences of my young life. I am still in touch with people in my country of service and will always have a deep bond with them. I went back to see them four years ago. But no, I was not able to end world hunger!

Willa married and went to live in London with her professor husband, where she had her two boys. But returned after they divorced. Some years later after we were both divorced from our first husbands, we decided to get our pledge class and the other actives when we were in college together for a reunion on the occasion of our alma mater's centennial celebration. A good 25 or 30 were able to attend a luncheon, and we had a blast! We all sat together at the football game wearing our badges along with the current chapter of actives. Several of us from out of town stayed with Willa in her home and had quite a slumber party! We were gratified to see that Chi Omega hadn't changed at all over the years and was still attracting the same quality of girls. We met a good many of the current crop of actives who were young and dewy and just adorable. There are now 12 NPC sororities on campus!

Willa never re-married despite having suitors. She returned to school and got her Masters in math and taught for many years back in the town of our alma mater before working in private industry. She did a beautiful job of rearing her two sons as a single mother. I did remarry, this time to an Ivy Leager. He came with three children, and we had one. We are still married; all the children are doing well and are happily married. None of them had the slightest interest in becoming a Greek. I did tons and tons of work in my community and raised lots of money for community organizations on a volunteer basis while also working full time, something I definitely carried over from my days as a Peace Corps volunteer. But I had also learned how to juggle a full schedule from my Chi Omega days. And most certainly leadership skills. I also became the recommendations chair for the southern part of my state. Much to my great surprise I was elected to first one Who's Who then subsequent others, something I had never expected. Before I had our son I returned to school for a Masters Degree and became a residential interior designer. That had never been in the cards for me as an undergraduate, but I loved working in design and helping to bring to fruition my clients' dreams for their homes. My husband and I are both now retired and remain active in our community here, which we both love. I still take out my Chi Omega Symphony to read from time to time.

Yes, sisterhood CAN be forever! This is Willa's and my story, but there are many others.


Chi Omega Yours Forever
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  #40  
Old 07-15-2014, 08:51 PM
MaryPoppins MaryPoppins is offline
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Wonderful story!
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  #41  
Old 07-15-2014, 08:51 PM
TriDeltaSallie TriDeltaSallie is offline
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Thank you so much for sharing your story. I hope you will inspire other members who rushed many years ago to share theirs as well!
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  #42  
Old 07-15-2014, 09:29 PM
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irishpipes irishpipes is offline
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I wish there were pictures!!! Great story
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  #43  
Old 07-15-2014, 09:42 PM
ADPiEE ADPiEE is offline
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This was a wonderful story! I've been trying to figure out the school because there are a few hints but I'm still stumped Thank you for sharing.
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  #44  
Old 07-15-2014, 09:43 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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it is nice for those of us who have been around for awhile to have the opportunity to reflect upon and write about the decisions we made as young women but from a very different perspective. Hopefully that will also help those who are just starting the process!
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  #45  
Old 07-15-2014, 09:49 PM
1964Alum 1964Alum is offline
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Smile

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Originally Posted by ADPiEE View Post
This was a wonderful story! I've been trying to figure out the school because there are a few hints but I'm still stumped Thank you for sharing.
Well.....I don't think that the school is as important as the common theme of the emotions and thought processes that most of us have going through rush and discovering where we belong.
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