In high school, when I thought Greek life, I thought I would end up like Elle Woods. I had this twisted concept in my head that by being in a sorority I would become a carbon copy of someone else. For all of you ladies coming into college with that same mindset, let me debunk that myth for you and tell you that Greek life is exactly what you make of it.
To relieve your worries, know that WashU’s Greek life and the atmosphere is extremely low key; it’s not something you have to be a part of in order to have a social life, but joining a sorority it is definitely a way to find like-minded girls outside of clubs, sports, and academics. For those of you who don’t know, (I was most definitely one of you), WashU currently has 9 sororities and 11 fraternities. For all of you ~legacies~ who do know the name(s) of the game, the sororities on our campus include Alpha Phi, Alpha Epsilon Phi, Alpha Omicron Pi, Chi Omega, Delta Gamma, Gamma Phi Beta, Kappa Delta, Kappa Kappa Gamma, and Pi Beta Phi.
But, there is a lot more to sororities than some random Greek letters. That is what the rush process is for. Before I go into detail, I will disclaim that it is emotionally and physically exhausting for all those involved, BUT it is definitely worth your time. Here is the game-plan for the days of ~finding your sisters~
Rush is a 5-day process. Day 1 and 2 are called Arete. On these two days, you go to parties (party: the event held by each sorority where you will talk to sisters) of Every. Single. Sorority. This may seem overwhelming but it’s a way of providing each PNM (PNM: potential new member) with a chance to be exposed to every group. These parties are pretty short and you’ll only talk to a few girls in each sorority. (Don’t worry, this is where the behind the scenes come into play. Sororities are kind of creepy and use information about you [that you already willingly gave them] to match you with sisters that have similar interests or passions). There is A LOT of girls and A LOT of talking on these two days so make sure you are awake and caffeinated.
After the first day, you will list the sororities from 1-9 based on which interactions you enjoyed the most. The sororities, get that same opportunity to decide if you’d be the right fit for them and will choose whether to invite you back or not. This process is continued at the end of each day where both you and the sisters eliminate more options, allowing you to thrift through groups to find the place for you.
The third day is Philanthropy day. Each sorority is paired with some sort of charity or organization that they intend to raise money for. This day is a chance to once again friend-flirt with sisters as well as get to know what cause the sorority supports! Continuing on, the fourth day is Sisterhood day. This day is filled with speeches of friendships formed and tears are often shed. It’s actually very wholesome and was my favorite day for sure.
The last day of rush, before receiving your bids and heading to your bid party, is Preferences day (this is the big one). This is decision day. Depending on whether you have 1 or 2 sororities left, this is where you choose your fate. When you get to this point with a sorority, it pretty much means that they love you as much as you love them! This is the day where the sororities pull all the stops to show you their experience and to get you to realize where your place is. It’s often a tough choice for many ladies to decide which group is for them. One piece of advice I was given that I will share with you is to not only choose the group of girls you see yourself in but choose the girls that embody who you want to be.
Although this was a brief overview, you’ll get the full rundown from recruitment counselors when the rush week kicks off. But do make sure to sign up in advance to be part of this process. You can find the registration link and additional information at http://wpa.wustl.edu/recruitment-2019/.
I want to make it very clear, that I came to college without the intention of rushing. I didn’t think it was for me and thought I would end up in a group of girls I wouldn’t be proud to be a part of. I decided to rush because 1) it’s a learning experience where you have to put yourself into a position you might not be comfortable in and 2) you do NOT have to commit after the process is over (or even after spending time with the sorority you get a bid from). It definitely might be scary and it’s definitely not for everyone, but don’t miss out on something that could really add to your college experience because of bias. I absolutely love my sorority and love the girls I’ve met. They are friends, mentors, and although it might be cheesy, sisters.