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  #1  
Old 07-18-2000, 11:21 AM
southern_theta southern_theta is offline
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Lightbulb My Advice to Sorority Rushees.....

A NOTE FROM THE MODERATOR: THIS THREAD IS VERY SPECIFIC TO RUSH AT LARGE, SOUTHERN SCHOOLS. PLEASE CONTACT YOUR UNIVERSITY GREEK LIFE OFFICE WITH SPECIFIC QUESTIONS REGARDING DRESS, LETTERS OF REFERENCE, FEES, AND APPLICATION DEADLINES.

******BEFORE RUSH********************
if you have any relatives, friends, teachers, bosses, or friends of the family who are alumnae or active members of a sorority which has a chapter at your college, ask them to fill out a recommendation form for you. give them a headshot photo of yourself to send in with the form. try to get recs even if they're not required, because they are always helpful & they'll make you stand out.

if you are a legacy, your relative needs to contact the chapter at your school and
introduce you with a letter.

be aware that the sisters are checking you out before rush has begun. if you have
classes with them, or see them at parties, they notice how you act & how you carry
yourself. don't do anything foolish in the early days of school & ruin your chances of
getting a good bid. if you acquire a slutty reputation right off the bat, and the girls
hear about it, you're basically finished with all the top sororities . if you're rushing in the early fall, this won't be as much of an issue for you, but this is crucial if you rush in winter. at schools with winter rush, the sisters basically know who they want
(by observing you & casually getting to know the freshmen girls) before formal rush has ever begun.

use the days before rush to check out the sisters & how they interact with each other. you may notice that you overhear some groups bitching about their sisters in public (a really bad sign about what it's like once you're in that house!), while you'll never hear that sort of thing from other groups. try to notice which houses seem the closest-knit, and which chapters have tons of cliques that divide the house.

******WHAT TO WEAR*******************

the expectations vary from college to college. before rush, panhellenic will let you know how fancy each night is. if they give you a range of fanciness for a particular night (such as, "you may wear nice pants or skirt"), always choose the dressier
option. it is worth the money & effort to look your absolute best for rush because you
only have 1 short week to make a good impression on the sisters. make sure your
clothes are neat & ironed. choose things that make you look sleek and classic. get a
haircut a week or 2 before rush, and do your nails. wear classic jewelry, like pearls or
a simple necklace. don't wear any clothes, jewelry, or makeup that's just plain weird,
because sororities want girls who will fit in, not stick out. if you have a chance to
observe the girls before rush, you may want to dress in the style of the chapters that
you most want to join. this is an easy (if shallow) way to show them how well you'd
fit.

******RUSH PARTIES********************

you will have to make an awful lot of small talk during each rush party. be prepared to
answer these questions over & over:
1. where are you from? what high school?
2. how do you like college so far?
3. what do you want to major in?
4. what activities are you involved in?
5. what did you do last night?
6. what did you do this summer/over christmas?
if they offer you food or a drink, feel free to accept 1 serving. they wouldn't offer the
stuff if they didn't want you to have it. never have seconds though. be careful of eating things like chocolate dipped strawberries because seeds may stick in your teeth! another thing, never ever ask to use the bathroom during a rush party because they'll interpret that as a signal that you're not interested in their house, and you may be cut because of that.

******WHAT SORORITIES ARE LOOKING FOR******

sororities try to select the rushees that they feel are:
1. enthusiastic about sororities (let this show!)
2. fun
3. poised
4. GENUINE is a big thing
5. dynamic
6. able to carry on the traditions and maintain the good reputation of the chapter
7. able to fit in with the current members, sharing the same values
8. confident and self-assured
9. positive & upbeat

******HOW TO CHOOSE**********************

almost all rushees just sense which house to choose once the pref night parties are over and the time has come to complete the preference card. it is just a feeling of which place was meant for you. you will probably attend 2 or 3 pref night parties. at the pref party of your best sorority, the one that's right for you, you'll feel touched by the ceremony & feel perfectly at home . at the others, you'll be impressed but you won't feel that same connectedness. you should choose the house that has girls who are like you right now, not one that has girls that you want to become more like. choose the house where you had the best conversations during rush parties.choose the house where the sisters seem to get along the best, without lots of cliques within the house. choose the house that can provide you with the most opportunities, socially & for service. choose a house with a reputation that you can be proud of. choose a house where you'll have a great pledge class (you can see what your pledge class might be like by seeing which rushees are the house's pref party with you).


it any of you other girls who have already been through rush have more tips, post them here! and if any rushees have more questions, i'd be glad to help if you leave them here.

[This message has been edited by southern_theta (edited July 18, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by PnguinTrax (edited June 19, 2001).]
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  #2  
Old 07-18-2000, 02:03 PM
southern_theta southern_theta is offline
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my school (which is 75% greek by the way) holds formal rush for women in the winter. we get photos of every freshman woman in august at the beginning of school out of the freshman facebook. we don't yet know who will rush (registration isn't until late october). we look at those photos from the facebook to try to familiarize ourselves with all of the freshmen women (i.e. potential rushees). at our meetings during the fall, we discuss the freshmen girls and we refer to the photos if we can't put a face with the name being discussed. the purpose of headshots is to help all the sisters get familiar with the freshmen before rush begins. some sororities may put up a slide of your picture during voting (if they use that method, mine doesn't) to help everyone remember who you are.

another bit of inside info about rush that i'd like to add--the night BEFORE pref night is crucial. if you make it to this night, you're doing great. you have survived the biggest cuts. houses usually don't cut after pref night.

[This message has been edited by southern_theta (edited July 18, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by southern_theta (edited July 18, 2000).]
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  #3  
Old 07-18-2000, 03:53 PM
equeen equeen is offline
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by southern_theta:
never ever ask to use the bathroom during a rush party because they'll interpret that as a signal that you're not interested in their house, and you may be cut because of that.

...how can the call of nature be interpreted in such a weird way?


------------------
equeen
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@>--;--
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  #4  
Old 07-18-2000, 03:57 PM
southern_theta southern_theta is offline
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i guess the theory behind that bathroom thing is that girls might ask to go to the bathroom if they were bored with the conversation or weren't really excited about rush and were looking to get away. since rush parties are less than an hour long, and the rushees can pee before they go in, some actives might interpret them going to the bathroom when they ought to be meeting sisters & getting introduced around as them not really caring about rush or not being excited about that particular sorority. that piece of advice is actually something that i read somewhere, not some policy in my own chapter, so i just thought i'd pass it along and you can use it or not.
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  #5  
Old 07-18-2000, 04:35 PM
equeen equeen is offline
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Thanks for clarifying the POV.
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  #6  
Old 07-18-2000, 04:49 PM
etienneSAI etienneSAI is offline
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southern_theta,

well-said girl! bravo on such a great post! i just have a few things that might be useful as well:

if you're interested in a particular house (esp. if you're a legacy for that house), read up on it! do your research and find out what you like about that sorority. maybe thier philanthropy is something you feel very strongly about. finding that out and letting the girls in that house know before hand can really affect your standing with the girls.

see what qualities you have that match the qualities and personalities of the girls whose houses you're rushing. simply put, find out who you'd click with. don't waste your time courting the girls that have the best house, the nicest clothes or the best fraternity to hang with, if you're not going to necesarily(sp) get along with them. they can smell a poser a mile away.

some other things that i know my ladies look for in rushees are :

~*~if they're mingling with other rushees and how they get along with them. (shows group involvment)
~*~if they're migrating to one sister, or trying to meet them all.
~*~if they know anything about the sorority ahead of time (if they took time to do research)
~*~if they take the time to see the displays we've put up. usually we put up pictures of sisters, big sis/little sis gifts (that can be displayed publicly) and information about our philanthropy.
~*~what thier reasons are for coming in the first place (if they REALLY want to be there, of if thier roommate made them come with them...although sometimes you can find a good pledge or two in this category)
~*~answers to group questions such as "why are you here tonight?", "what do you think you could bring to this organization?", "where do you see yourself fitting in with this group?" and things like that.

rush is different everywhere, and southern_theta did a great job of really summarizing a lot of common traits. above all else, BE YOURSELF! any sorority with brains can tell if you're putting up a front to try and get in. of course, if you DO bypass that and happen to get a bid, they'll see your "true self" sooner or later and it's just a big mess...better to be yourself the first time around! good luck! i'd like to extend the invitation to answer questions as well as southern_theta...i'm sure we both have different perspectives on this topic!

etienne
sigma alpha iota-the hartt school of music

------------------
"red is the color of music and has been since the very earliest of times. the caps of faeries and musicians are well-nigh always red."~*~w.b.yeats
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  #7  
Old 07-21-2000, 09:44 PM
soccerchik soccerchik is offline
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Lightbulb

Thanks for all the info! I'm still in h.s.
and was kinda wondering about RUSH and stuff.
I have a few friends in sororities...but all this info really helped. If you think of any other info, please post it. Thanks!
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  #8  
Old 07-22-2000, 01:33 AM
beth5483 beth5483 is offline
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WOW! This information was really helpful! I enjoy learning about rush--I am soo nervus aboout it!
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  #9  
Old 07-26-2000, 08:53 AM
Manders Manders is offline
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For all you girls saying you are so nervous....don't be! It's really nothing to be nervous about. Instead of Winter rush we have spring rush, which is what I did. If any of you are planning on doing this, it is COMPLETELY different. It's a lot more laid back and casual. Fall is very formal. Be prepared to meet TONS of people and really try to remember names. In regards to head shots, recs, etc. Before you go out and do this, check to see if this is even a thing at your school. I know that at my school if you brought all that in it would look like you're a little too eager. People would look at you like "what's all this?" More important than anything I think, is don't go with the sorority with the best rep or the "hot girls" or anything like that. Go with girls you can be great friends with!
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Old 07-27-2000, 12:08 AM
AlphaChiGirl AlphaChiGirl is offline
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Wow...Southern Theta, that was great! That's basically what I learned the summer prior to my Freshman Year (I'm from the South). It turned out I was overprepared for my school (progressive liberal school in New England), but it worked out for the best. I don't think Rush is a thing that you can be overprepared for. That bathroom thing is a little odd, but I can appreciate it. I'm going to be Rush Chair next year, so anything I hear helps.
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  #11  
Old 07-28-2000, 09:17 PM
Texas Alum Texas Alum is offline
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southern_theta : WAY TO GO! you did an awesome job. I'm going to direct all the HS seniors I know to your post; it really sums up the formal fall rush need-to-know.

Other things I'd like to add - THESE ARE GEARED MOSTLY TOWARD FORMAL FALL - I have no experience with delayed rush:

1) when you ask people to write recommendations ("recs") for you, only ask once! Don't be pushy - unless it's your scatter-brained aunt who lets you get away with it.

2) If you do not know a lot of Greek alumnae, look up the local Panhellenic alumnae org. in your area (cities will have one definitely, towns might have a regional one - if you can't find yours, call the PH office at the university you are attending, they will guide you). Often you can register with your area Panhellenic, and then alumnae that you don't even know will write letters on your behalf! Nobody says this, but recs are all-important at a lot of schools - so don't ignore them!

3) Re: your head shots: the goal of this is mainly recognition. The sorority wants to be able to identify you on sight when you come into their house. THAT'S IT! You want to look cute, classy and casual. This is not the time for your prom photos, or Glamour Shots with a lot of hair and makeup and a feather boa, or your cheerleading picture. Also, however you look in your head shots, don't make major changes before rush - i.e. dramatic hair cut or color. The sorority members then might not recognize you at first. Just wait till after Bid Day!

4) Prior to and during rush week: watch out for AGENTS! An agent is a term for someone who is unofficially representing a sorority but is not a member - such as the boyfriend of a member. You need to always be on your very best behavior, because you never know when the person in line behind you at the cafeteria might be listening to every word you say. Also, do not listen to the opinions of fraternity men on "which sororities are the best". They are not a part of the sisterhood and most of those "rankings" are based on shallow things like who their chapter mixes with, who they think the cutest girls are, etc.

5) My foolproof tip for making rush conversation at the first round of parties:

If you think you are tired of hearing those same five questions over and over (major, high school, what did you do last night, interests, etc.) - imagine how tired the active is of asking! An active will definitely positively remember a rushee who has an interesting story to tell, or asks HER a question instead of only following her lead. Pick a short interesting anecdote - maybe about your moving-in experience, or about your summer travels, anything that reflects on you positively - and use it at every house! (but only ONCE... you don't want to be remembered at the second round of parties as the girl who tells the same story over and over) You will feel confident if conversation lags, and the active will get a chance to learn something more about you.

6) Turn a worst-case scenario into a positive experience. If you are late for a party for some reason (usually discouraged by PH), apologize to your hostess (the active) and then let it go! If you get a run in your hose or a truck of fraternity boys with water balloons drives by and splats you (true story!), laugh it off and let it go! You will be remembered for your poise and grace under pressure.

7) NEVER BUT NEVER ever say anything negative about another sorority while at a party - even if it is at your very favorite chapter. You wouldn't (and shouldn't) be asked about your experiences at another house, but if you are, be neutrally positive but not effusive. It looks SOOOOOO bad.

8) This is well-known at Texas schools and can be a key strategy move:

If you are at the chapter house on pref night (the last party), then they are 99% prepared to offer you a bid... but they are trying to guess if you are going to pref them too! If the sorority thinks you are only halfway interested in them, they might put you lower on their bid list in favor of a girl who they KNOW is going to pref them first.

A sorority member can't (and shouldn't) ask you directly about your intentions on pref night. That's dirty rushing, and is influential. BUT... there is nothing to stop you from expressing your intentions to HER! At your favorite house on pref night, make sure you are at the TOP of their bid list by saying something like "I just love XYZ and feel really at home here" or "I really hope I will see you again on Bid Day."

Ask your Rho Chi or Panhellenic reps before rush what the restrictions are on rushee conversation, but ALMOST ALWAYS the rule is that the sororities themselves are restricted -- but the rushees can say anything they'd like.
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Old 09-08-2000, 01:34 PM
SoCalGirl SoCalGirl is offline
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Okay, this is REALLY LONG!!!

More advice, since not every one has started yet & some of ya’ll have crazy rushes that last for weeks. I agree with most of what has been said so far. But more advice doesn’t usually hurt.

***Disclaimer—all the advice we give is really best suited at rush for our own schools or possibly the region that the school is in. Southern rush & Western rush are really at two ends of the scale.

For the best universal advice search for everything PnguinTrax has written on the topic. She knows her stuff, and it’s all been checked by the NPC.

+++BEFORE RUSH+++
Do some self evaluation.

Write down all the reasons that you want to be in a sorority. Be honest with yourself! Include the superficial and the deep reasons.

Write down all the experiences that you want to get out of a sorority. Once again honesty is key.

After doing that, ask yourself if you really want to do this right now. Unless it’s a firm no, go through rush. The night before Pref, and immediately after, ask yourself again. If you have doubts at this point, talk to your Rho Chi. It’s what she’s there for.


+++WHAT TO WEAR+++
I disagree with the advice to wear what you see the members wearing. Unless that’s what you already like and want to wear. I also disagree that sororities want girls who will fit in, not stick out. My sorority is not looking for clones. We’re looking for girls that people notice. Why have members that blend into the crowd when one stand out can get a lot more attention for your chapter? Yeah we want girls that will get along and click personality wise. But image wise- if a girl dresses uniquely it shows me that she has a lot of self confidence.

Dress like yourself & be sure that you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing. I do agree with the advice to go with the dressier option if given a range. When in doubt, ask the Rho Chi.

+++HOW TO CHOOSE+++
It’s been said a million times: most girls “just know”. But if that feeling doesn’t just come to you… there are other ways.

When I went through rush the house I ended up in was 1st in my heart but #2 in my head. The house that was 2nd in my heart was #1 in my head. I was completely torn up by this.
With ABC (not my house) I had great conversation. It ran the gambit from touching & heart felt to totally random. I was completely nervous during the parties and completely impressed by the girls. I balled my eyes out during Pref. I knew that if I joined them I could be friends with them, and they were just like I wanted to be.
With XYZ (my house) I had good conversation that was kept mainly to the sorority. I was very calm during all the parties, including Pref. I knew that if I joined them I’d be friends with these girls, and they were already like me. But the thing that really showed me the way was that I knew that I could be friends with these girls even if I didn’t join. I somehow knew that if I hadn’t rushed ABC I probably never would have talked to any of them. But the XYZs were girls that I would start a conversation with in class.

So follow your heart! Pick the house that you already are similar to, not what you want to be molded into. Pick the house that you would have been friends with anyways.

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Old 09-08-2000, 02:13 PM
mgdzkm433 mgdzkm433 is offline
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Ok, I've been reading and I just have to say that when I decided to go to rush parties, if I wasn't good enough the way I was, then they weren't good enough for me. Girls, please please please please don't be someone else at rush. Why would you want to join a organization that was not a reflection of you or what you believe in?!? Furthermore, if you are joining a sorority for the social hype of it all, you're joining for the wrong reasons. Yeah, you want to get along with the sisters or it won't be a good experience, but you should be joining because you're interested in what the sorority stands for. . . biggest example PHILANTHROPY!!! The social aspect of sororities are only a minor part of it. This is not a popularity contest! Sororities are around to further goals. . . goals such as education, aiding the hearing and seeing impaired, animal rights, breast cancer research. If you're not interested in any of these things, then you are wasting not only your time and money, but the sorority's time and money.

" it is worth the money & effort to look your absolute best for rush because you
only have 1 short week to make a good impression on the sisters. make sure your
clothes are neat & ironed. choose things that make you look sleek and classic. get a
haircut a week or 2 before rush, and do your nails. wear classic jewelry, like pearls or
a simple necklace. don't wear any clothes, jewelry, or makeup that's just plain weird,
because sororities want girls who will fit in, not stick out. if you have a chance to
observe the girls before rush, you may want to dress in the style of the chapters that
you most want to join. this is an easy (if shallow) way to show them how well you'd
fit."


I couldn't disagree more. You should be yourself and if you're weird or quirky or whatever, don't lower yourself to dressing/acting a part that isn't you, in the long run you will be unhappy. Also, don't go out and spend a ton of money on clothing for rush, not only is there a chance that you might NOT be offered a bid, but accepting a bid and going through new membership process can be REALLY expensive. I'd hold off on spending money for rush clothes that you could use to pay for your sorority pin later on. The bathroom thing, if you have to go. . .GO!

Girls, this is a lifetime commitment. Join for the right reasons.



[This message has been edited by mgdzkm433 (edited September 08, 2000).]
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  #14  
Old 09-08-2000, 06:40 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Dressing for rush can be compared to dressing for a job interview. When I interviewed for my job, I wore a conservative suit. Now that I'm here, I can dress a little funkier (which is one of the things I like about my job). The advice not to wear something "weird" I don't think negates being yourself.

Example: Suzy dresses in vintage clothes 24/7. She looks infinitely better than the women who go out and blow thousands of dollars on Rodeo Drive. Does that mean Suzy should go to Ann Taylor, and get the standard sundress? No, it means wear the thing from YOUR closet that best fits the occasion. If you can carry off unique clothing with grace and style - and by age 18-19 you should know if you can - you will make a positive impression.

But if you go in wearing electric blue spandex pants (true story - we had a rushee who did) and have a "if they can't see all the wonderfulness inside me, then screw them" attitude, you will make a negative impression. That is being very passive-aggressive. There is a difference between celebrating your uniqueness, and being defensive about it and shoving it in people's faces.

As far as buying clothes for rush, remember that nowadays not everyone is a regular churchgoer, or has a lot of dressy clothes. EVERYONE should have a simple, classic dress or 2 - in a cut that is flattering to you - by the time you're in college. That way you'll be set for rush, job interview, weddings you'll be attending, etc. Don't go buy a whole new wardrobe if you don't need it, but if you have to buy things anyway, simple, classic, well made is the way to go.


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Old 09-25-2000, 03:34 PM
sigmagrrl sigmagrrl is offline
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I just have to interject on the clothes deal. When I rushed (early 90's), let me tell you, I HAD NO CLOTHES THAT FIT OR FLATTERED ME! Why? I had just graduated from 12 years of Catholic school with NO SENSE OF STYLE! They were too small, a bit outdated, and basically EWW!!LOL But I have a personality that does shine through when I put the menial, unimportant things behind me and out of the way and relaxed. Women who are looking at your clothes are not the kind of women you may want to associate yourself with unless this is truly your personality (fashion major, "Lady who Lunches"!!). I cannot stress the GO WITH YOUR HEART AND GUT fact more!!!!!!
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