Recruitment by a First Timer

There were so many things running through my head when I think about Spring Recruitment: what to wear, things I should say, how compatible am I for sorority life, was living in the Central Neighborhood detrimental to my chances of getting a bid? There’s a lot going on. If you're like me, a brand new IU freshman, recruitment is a big deal.

It's exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. The schedule got sooooo messed up this year (Thanks Snowpocalypse 2014!), as most people have heard by now. So who knows how things are going to be different next year. However, I am almost glad it was. Spreading all 21 Parties between 3 days was exhausting however it was still a complete and total blast, but exhausting nonetheless. I guess it’s a good thing that 21-Party hadn’t started until the beginning of second semester.

With finals stacking up, at the end of my very first semester, I had so much to do and was already getting pumped for recruitment. Studying is never something I would want to use as a distraction, as my academics are one of the most important things in the world to me (What? I want to be successful in college?? Who would want something that crazy?!). I prefer to go wholeheartedly into my studies rather than create distractions with it. So it was nice to be able to focus my energy on doing everything I needed to for each course: finishing essays by deadlines, doing practice exams, getting some serious textbook reading in, and then making sure to arrive on time to my exams.

Preparation:

The media makes it sound like getting ready for recruitment is so materialistic and appearance means everything. Not the case at all. Although, that doesn’t mean that I was about to let a reason to shop over break slide. Like most young ladies my age, shopping is about as much fun as any girl can have. If you have other friends who share this passion, they’re a great resource to have besides your mother (I’m serious, keep her handy, she’s awesome). My little sister was MORE than happy to help me out, if not a little jealous at my expanding extravagant wardrobe. Make sure you have items that can ACTUALLY function as fashion and functionality. Keeping warm is hard enough in the winter in normal clothes so make sure that you can get around easily in your outfits safely. Besides, they will give you time to fix yourself before rounds if you feel it’s necessary. I was worried that I would be freezing the entire time while going through recruitment, however, I had a nice soft and fluffy yellow coat that I was able to wear the entire time through 21-Party. It was nice because it made sure that someone was going to notice me and I was going to stay warm(er).

Everything else that was recommended by the Rho Gammas was easily found in a Target errand run. All those things you see like “Recruitment Necessities” are true. They really are. Mints, quick snacks, Chapstick, tissues, and makeup, the whole shebang. Keep them all together with you at all times in a big handbag. Some girls kept their things on them in their pockets, if you really think you can by all means go for it. I couldn’t.

A huge thing to note though is your makeup. You know what kind of makeup you feel most comfortable in. Recruitment is not the time to change your system. You perfect it. Don’t go out and buy a whole bunch of beautiful brand-new makeup in order to create a look that you don’t have experience making. Get colors that you feel will work with a lot of your outfits. Nail color included. Changing nail color is a great inconvenience for every outfit, don’t you think?

After that I spent my time between creating the perfect hair that will put up with the snow and or rain- as well as my own wild and movements, and figuring out the way small-talk works (It can be hard sometimes). I recommend you get used to being loud, assuming you’re not already, you’ll be yelling quite a bit just to be heard by an active sister most of the time. I have work experience as a restaurant waitress and had no problem with this, between the everyday lunch-time rushes to the hectic days before Thanksgiving and Christmas; my voice has gone through several rough patches to make me the vocalist I am today. Of course the singing with co-workers in between dead zones helped quite a lot too (A WHOLE NEW WOOOORLD!).

Now the Experience:

First day, get your nifty nametag (Your Rho Gammas are so proud of them and they're all so cool to see) and go! Thanks to my friend Caitlin for giving me permission post hers!
Rush itself was new. There is way more yelling than anyone ever told you. Singing along is encouraged but keeping that smile is key. It’s obvious when people are being kiss-ups and that translates to ingenuine no matter how nice it is. Not the kind of person that an active member would want to have as a sister. It’s a natural thing, being nice, so don’t push it. The girls are always going to be friendly to you but they are nervous too. So a lagging conversation is totally normal. Don’t let it make your opinion about an entire chapter. It should be an overall feeling that you get even just sitting there surrounded by the chapter members and other PNMs. Especially in later rounds, is this a comfortable crowd? One person is not going to break a chapter for you if it’s full of tons of amazing people that can make it.

Not sure if anyone will find this helpful but I hope I gave a little bit more insight into IU Sorority Recruitment than every other article you have already read online. Other than everything that was listed, there really is no other way to prepare for Recruitment properly, except to get to know your potential sisters. It’s exhausting and stressful, but amazing and a total blast.

I will always be glad that it was something that I was able to experience. My Rho Gamma is one of the most fun people I met in all of recruitment and I met so many other cool and interesting people throughout the entire process. I am so proud of everyone that made it through the crazy schedule, with letters to show for it or not. The girls that go through recruitment every year are some of the most rockin’ in the entire country, enough said.

About me:

I am a Freshman here at IU, otherwise known as the greatest school ever. I came here from Zionsville, Indiana, but have lived all over the country in places like Cleveland, Ohio; Albuquerque, New Mexico; and more! I have big plans for the future but sometimes, like now, they're a little unclear. Still working on it but I'll keep loving life until I know and beyond!!

Feel free to follow me @DistractedAlly on twitter!

Name: Ally Vanatsky
Hometown: Zionsville, Indiana
Degree and Major:
Graduation Year: 2017

For more on Sororities:

About The Author
* IU Students and AlumniIU Hoosiers from around the world

Any and all IU students and alumni are welcome to share their stories on WeAreIU.com.  Your stories help others realize how awesome IU is, and find out what this school has to offer, not just academically, but as a whole person.