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  #1  
Old 07-07-2008, 02:57 PM
SophieCat SophieCat is offline
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Unsure about Rush

I am rushing Fall 2008... or I plan on it at least. I have a bajillion worries and any consolation or help will be much appreciated. I think I just need a confidence boost, but be honest...

So... I am going to be a sophomore at my school this fall. I am very shy, and last year I made several "friendly acquaintances" but not even one real friend. I am sick of being so lonely and friendless so I thought maybe going through recruitment and hopefully joining a sorority will help me to make the sister-like friends I long for. I registered for the fall 2008 recruitment already but I am unsure if I will actually through with it. I am unsure how competitive my school's rush is but I know that the sororities have a seperate quota for the few non-freshman who rush. However, I am not a legacy to any sorority and it looks like I am not going to have any recs at all. (My parents and most of the adults I know did not go to colleges with greek life or were not a member of one. There is no alumnae association in or near my area. Also, my school's PH site says not to worry about them, only contact alumna you know.) Some of my aforementioned "friendly acquaintances" are in sororities but I am not entirely sure what impression they have of me. I have a terrible fear that I will be rejected by all of the orgs at my school. Even worse is the fear that I will join one only to find I don't really fit in. I afraid that I won't know what to say at the parties and will make myself look dumb. I am afraid that I will end up being the only non-Freshman going through rush. I am afraid that I will chicken out and instead hide in my room alone like I did all last year. I wouldn't feel half this worried if I wasn't rushing alone.
I'm not sure if anyone can help, but any ideas?
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  #2  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:18 PM
SthrnZeta SthrnZeta is offline
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Search the Greek Chat site - you're not the only one who is afraid of formal recruitment. It's perfectly normal to be worried you won't get in or nervous about the parties. As trite as this sounds, all you can do is be yourself (and confident) and if you don't get in to any of the orgs, then it wasn't meant to be and that's not something to beat yourself up over. There are plenty of other orgs on campus that offer a great camaraderie and bonding experience that aren't greek. Being in a sorority isn't the end all be all to having a great college experience but you have to be willing to put yourself out there, people won't come to you. Search this site a little bit, I guarantee you'll find other threads from posters just like you and lots of valuable advise was offered. Best of luck in the Fall, whatever you end up choosing to do!

ETA: I rushed as a sophomore and had two juniors in my pledge class. It definitely depends on the campus, but we didn't need recs and being an upperclassman made little difference. My campus had 6 chapters as well but I wouldn't say my campus was competitive.
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Last edited by SthrnZeta; 07-07-2008 at 03:34 PM.
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  #3  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:22 PM
socialite socialite is offline
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Well i'm no sorority member but I rushed my fraternity as a sophomore without being a legacy and I know it really wasn't that big a deal but I also know sorority dynamics are different BUT where they are different, a sophomore is probably not gonna be a big deal... I'll let the other sorors talk that one up but I can help with social affairs...

As for the social aspect of it all; Building relationships [whether friends or intimate], TAKES WORK. You might have to force yourself out of your room to get yourself out there but if you want to make friends you have to MAKE friends for yourself, their not gonna just poof into place. If everytime you get nervous or scared you run back into your hiding place you will get yourself nowhere... It not "How can i be rejected if i dont give myself the opportunity to be?" In the same way you may not fit in but HOW WILL YOU KNOW? And if you don't it will NOT be the end of the world and certainly not the end of your social life because there will be plenty of opportunitys to put yourself out there... As for making yourself look stupid at parties, just think about everything you say before you say it... Lastly, when you rush-- don't sit in a corner and mope, MAKE friends to go through rush with!

Hope I could help.
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  #4  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:32 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SophieCat View Post
I am unsure how competitive my school's rush is but I know that the sororities have a seperate quota for the few non-freshman who rush. However, I am not a legacy to any sorority and it looks like I am not going to have any recs at all. (My parents and most of the adults I know did not go to colleges with greek life or were not a member of one. There is no alumnae association in or near my area. Also, my school's PH site says not to worry about them, only contact alumna you know.)
If your school has a separate quota for non-freshmen and even mentions recs....this tells me that you DO need them, in spite of what the website says.

Go here http://www.npcwomen.org/alumnae-panh...directory.aspx and find the alum panhel closest to you, even if it's not in your immediate area - they will be able to help you obtain recs.

If you go through rush, even if you don't get a bid, you will meet lots of new people and it will help you with your shyness. You most likely will not be the only non-freshman going through. Even if you don't get a bid...you will be no worse off than you are already.

Good luck!
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  #5  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:36 PM
SthrnZeta SthrnZeta is offline
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33girl is right, it sounds like recs may be necessary. And even if they aren't, it can't hurt you to have them.
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  #6  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:45 PM
basket96 basket96 is offline
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be yourself and try to have fun

Being a sophomore should not affect you at most schools. However, some schools are VERY competitive (esp. in the south). At the school where I am an adviser, at least half of potential new members are sophomores, juniors and even seniors.

Try to really get to know the ladies you are meeting. Ask them questions about themselves, their sorority, their philanthropic activities, etc. There are some great books on "great questions for getting to know people"... One of the most important aspects of being a good conversationalist is asking others questions about themselves. Be aware, that good sorority rushers will do the same for you, so plan in advance those topics you may want to discuss. This will help, especially if you get a little nervous. Try to avoid talking about boys and parties. This will be discouraged for the sorority members as well.

What types of activities interest you? Volunteering with school children? Raising money for certain philanthropies? Have you done any of this in the past?

You can be shy and still be a GREAT member. Remember, a good sorority has some chiefs and some indians. If everyone was a chief, then it would be difficult to get things done. Strong committee members (indians) are an integral part of sorority life. Additionally, many offices operate somewhat behind the scenes and are perfect for someone like you who is more on the quiet side.

I would also offer that you want to find the place where you really feel you fit in with the members. This may or may not be the "best" house on campus. I remember being dropped from the "best" house on my campus as a freshman. That house is no longer on campus, as they withered away a few years after I graduated. So, you never know what the future will bring. I ended up at the smallest house (they had just graduated more than 50% of their members), which overnight became the LARGEST house on campus due to their successful recruitment. They are still on campus, and the other one is not. To me the most important thing was being where I truly felt I fit in, not where I thought I "should" fit in.

What types of leadership experiences have you had? Do you want to pursue these types of activities during your college years? What types of leadership opportunities will membership in each particular sorority present? Some have leadership training events for members. What about networking with alumnae? (particularly beneficial for those internships and jobs after graduation).

You can also check out the national web sites for the sororities on your campus. Find out what their philanthropies are and what their mission statements state. Then you can ask specific questions and show an interest in the members you meet.

I hope this information is helpful. I hope you decide to go through recruitment and have a wonderful time! Try to meet as many people (both members and potential new members) as you can.


Finally, remember that the members are nervous too and excited to meet you! Try to open up so that they can get to know you and what makes you special!

Good luck!
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  #7  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:46 PM
basket96 basket96 is offline
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references

one more thing.....I forgot to add that if you don't have a reference, don't worry about it. If your mom happens to know someone, that's fine, but I would not sweat it.
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  #8  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:51 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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Originally Posted by basket96 View Post
one more thing.....I forgot to add that if you don't have a reference, don't worry about it. If your mom happens to know someone, that's fine, but I would not sweat it.
I disagree.

As you said, some schools in the South are super competitive and she would have a major problem if she doesn't have recs even if she was a freshman, let alone a sophomore.

SophieCat is being smart in not posting her school, but it also prevents us from definitely saying she does or doesn't need recs. With the information she gave us, it sounded to me that it would be best to err on the side of caution and obtain recs.
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  #9  
Old 07-07-2008, 03:54 PM
carnation carnation is offline
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Sophie, if you're in the south, get recs. And if y'all have fall rush--please do it soon! Start talking to your high school teachers and other women who know you.
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  #10  
Old 07-07-2008, 07:39 PM
LadyLonghorn LadyLonghorn is offline
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If you're on a competitive campus where it's uncommon for non-freshmen to rush, I think the most important question someone who is not a freshman needs to prepare themselves for is "Why didn't you rush as a freshman?" Be honest with yourself about the whys and practice being able to express the reasons in a positive and confident manner to anyone who asks.

And I agree with the others, it sounds like you really do need recs. They certainly wouldn't hurt!
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  #11  
Old 07-08-2008, 12:11 AM
Fleur de Lis Fleur de Lis is offline
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I would encourage you to go through recruitment, simply because it's a great way to meet a lot of women at your school. However, I will warn you - even if you are extended a bid and are initiated, this doesn't automatically mean you will be close with your sisters. Far from it actually - a lot of posters on this board experience a little disillusionment when they have been involved for a while but haven't met any really close sisters. I commend you for wanting to get involved, but be sure you aren't looking for a quick fix.

I would also recommend talking with a counselor at your school. They have a lot of expertise dealing with people that have the same problems as you. They may have some helpful tips on how to boost your confidence and grow friendships with your peers. Good luck!
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  #12  
Old 07-08-2008, 01:35 AM
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pbear19 pbear19 is offline
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Goodness knows I cannot add anything to what these ladies have already told you about the process, but I do think I can speak to overcoming shyness. I completely empathize with the feelings you wrote about, the almost paralyzing fear of both doing something and also of not doing that very thing. I would say that, although it would be hard if something happened and you did not end up with a bid, my guess is you will have more regrets if you opt out before you start. Ask yourself honestly if you will regret more the possiblity of not trying, or the possibility of trying and not getting the result you want.

As for being shy, the only way I know of to get beyond that is practice. Even if you feel silly, start off small by chatting with the cashier the next time you make a purchase somewhere. You don't have to have a full conversation, just something to start getting you used to talking to strangers. Try to make at least one overture to a stranger every day, just for practice. I promise it gets easier the more often you do it! If you are in class, ask the person next to you a question, even if you already know the answer. Even little things like saying thank you and smiling when someone holds a door, or bless you when someone sneezes, just so long as you say them in a strong voice that projects to your audience. If you feel nervous try to remind yourself to smile and stand up straight, and speak in a strong voice. When I look approachable I always feel more confident about myself, but when I look like I'm nervous or timid I always feel nervous and timid. (To that end, be sure to spend some time finding comfortable and flattering clothes to wear, as your confidence in your outward appearance really can have a huge impact on your ability to small talk.) These are just the really small first steps, but it's all part of what helped me to get over my shyness. Truly, being sociable and chatty takes practice for those of us to whom it does not come naturally, but it *is* possible to fake it. Best of luck to you, I have every confidence in you!!
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  #13  
Old 07-08-2008, 11:07 AM
lawgal lawgal is offline
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What great advice

Basket 96, I copied your answer and emailed it to my daughter who will be going through rush as a freshman late summer of 2009. I think you should copy it into one of the recruitment threads about what to say and not say.

Also, pbear19, your advice for shy people was really good. I think it is wonderful that the people on GC take some time to address an issue that comes up that transcends the greek world or recruitment.
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  #14  
Old 07-08-2008, 01:51 PM
jayneelizabeth jayneelizabeth is offline
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I'm rushing this fall too, though as a freshman. I am also very anxious about it and who knows if I will even receive a bid but I would totally agree that you should go for it! Even if you don't become a member of any of the groups on your campus, you can become closer with those acquaintances you mentioned and definitely meet new girls who could potentially become really good friends whether you end up joining a sorority or not. Just go in confident and open to whatever happens and I am positive you will have a good experience! That is how I have been told to look at it and it has made me more excited than nervous.

Good luck!


-Jayne
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  #15  
Old 07-08-2008, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by SophieCat View Post
Thanks so much for all this good advice! I'll have to remember to come back and reread parts of this thread come august.

About recs, I am (unfortunately in this case) at a southern school but it is not big nor is it part of the SEC. According to our VP of recruitment usually only about 10 non-freshman go through recruitment in the fall and we have 6 sororities. Since we have a seperate quota and since there are so few upperclassmen rushing, wouldn't it be less competitive and therefore make recs less important? Tell me if I'm wrong...
As it's already been suggested, just get your recs.
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