“New member journey” starts with positive sorority recruitment

Girls of Delta Delta Delta watch the potential new members open their bid cards. UO Sorority member welcome hundreds of new members at the 2015 Bid Day on Oct. 9, 2015. (Cole Elsasser/Emerald) Photo credit: Cole Elsasser

For 710 women on Oct. 6, the bid in their hands led them to their own chapter home.

“It feels like being sorted into a house in Harry Potter,” Emilie Steinblums, new Kappa Alpha Theta member, said.

A record-breaking 960 potential new members registered for 2015 Fall Formal Recruitment; just about 100 more women than last year.

“We did eventually have to cap registration this year, and we did do that as well, but we capped at a lower number last year,”Josie Roberts, Panhellenic Council Vice President of Recruitment, said. “So this year, we went ahead and closed registration at about 960 women.”

Fitting 960 women in to meet all of the chapters was a time crunch.

“We had to have another event just so that we could fit all of the women in the chapter houses without breaking fire code,” Roberts said. “We had to just add another party to that fifth day and that just extended the night another thirty minutes.”

This year about 250 women did not find a chapter that fit them. Leadership Days let women to visit every chapter and go through an interview process. After those days, PNMs and the chapters rate each other. After, the women receive a schedule of which chapters they would to return to.

“Every time we have a new schedule come out and women are looking at their choices, sometimes that’s when we usually start seeing withdrawal,” Roberts said.

Although some women turned away from sorority life, other women like new Kappa Alpha Theta member Isabella Conferti found recruitment an educational experience.

“Although recruitment was a stressful and tiring experience, it was overall enjoyable and worth it in the end,” Isabella Conferti, new Kappa Alpha Theta member, said. “For anyone that is considering going to recruitment, it is a good experience regardless if you get into a house at all because it helps develop your communication skills.”

According to Steinblums, the chapter that each woman chooses to be apart of embodies the traits and disposition of that woman.

“I feel like whatever house you end up in, ends up reflecting on the house,” Steinblums said.

For Roberts, recruitment was an incredibly positive experience this year.

“It’s just great to see a transformation from the first day when everyone was just kind of checking in all the way to the end, and now they’re going to be setting off on their new member journey and learning about their chapter and what it’s all about and really starting that experience so it felt like a really positive year this year,” Roberts said.

Looking to join in during next year’s recruitment is new chapter Sigma Kappa, to which Roberts is excited to have a part of the sorority community.

“We’re really excited to have Sigma Kappa here recolonizing because that’s going to open the door for so many more women next year,” Roberts said.

As for this year, many new members like Conferti are pleased with how the process of recruitment played out.

“Overall, you’re going to be happy in any sorority you end up in,” Conferti said.

Women interested in Sigma Kappa are encouraged to attend an informational meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 14 at 7:00 p.m. in Pacific 123.

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