It’s that time of year again! I have made my fare share of trips to Target to peruse the school supplies and see all the new gadgets and toys that have come out this year. I haven’t been in school for years and haven’t bought school supplies for even longer, but I still like to look and I could always use another notebook or notepad! With school supplies being released, kids are going back to school and cities are clearing out with young adults going back to college. I’m already hearing moms starting to cry about their babies leaving and others praising that they’ve finally made it to the point where their kids are gone! To each his own. With freshman leaving and my email inbox blowing up begging for donations means nothing more than: RECRUITMENT SEASON!! It gets me so excited for what these women are about to experience.
First, rest assured: I am not the crazy sorority girl who wishes I was still there. I enjoy watching and supporting from afar, but I do not miss being there. My time has come and gone, and I look forward for the next round of women to come through. I wasn’t always so supportive and eager, though. I started out my college career as a GDI. Sororities were just not for me. I rushed and hated every minute of the small talk and forced conversations, plus my father was adamant that he was not going to pay for it. If you don’t know, that’s a pretty penny for a poor college student to foot on her own. So I dropped out of rush and just stuck with my friends who ended up pledging.
I Had Major FOMO
I listened to people talk about the sisterhood and the secrets they shared just from being a part of a group of other women. I finally convinced myself that they were just paying for friends. However when my Kappa Delta roommates continued to come home with canvases painted “AOT” and could take pictures with their sorority sisters throwing their letters, I couldn’t help but think I might be missing out on something. I wasn’t allowed to know what “AOT” stood for (and KD’s you can rest assured, to this day I still don’t know and it still bothers me just a little bit) and I didn’t have a group of girls to eat lunch with every Friday for Chicken Finger Friday!
I just accepted the fact that I would eat in the dorms Monday night and Friday lunch to save my meals. I planned my mega study nights around the functions schedule. I always helped get everyone ready and send them off but I was never allowed to go! It was an exclusive club I chose not to join. I had a bit of FOMO and started to second guess my first ever college decision.
Fast forward a few years and the University of Arkansas decided to expand their Greek life. Two new sororities were coming and I jumped at the idea that I could be part of a monumental shift on campus. This was a big deal- Arkansas has not expanded their Greek life in years and years. This was something new and something I could leave my mark on when I graduated. So, without my father’s permission or blessing I joined Alpha Chi Omega as a founding member of the Delta Rho chapter!! I ended up becoming the assistant VP recruitment and helped lead a huge recruitment season. I am still proud of the 140 new women I introduced to our growing sisterhood! It was such a cool experience pioneering the way for so many women to come be a part of something like this.
Moral of the Story
Joining a sorority so late in my college career forced me to be confident. We were the underdogs on campus, we didn’t have as many people, and I felt more judged around campus because of the new environment we were creating. I had to either be confident or I had to quit.
I also had to learn to talk to so many different people. Recruitment was eye opening for me personally because I had no idea how awkward I was!! I was trained on how to talk to women and essentially sell our sisterhood to them! This was very unnatural for me, and took quite a bit of practice but I managed. And I can’t forget about all the amazing people I met through rushing. Some of these women are still my very close friends and even were in my wedding! I would have never crossed paths with them had it not been for AXO. Years later, we are still just as close and I will cherish these sisters forever.
The lessons I learned joining a sorority have followed me long after college. I have an instant connection with other AXO alumnus I meet (and there are a lot out there!). I know how to hold a meaningful conversation with people. I learned how to stay organized, prepare for things I would have never expected, and how to be pleasant at 4:30 am- thanks recruitment. I know what commitment is and how to show others they can rely on me. I’ve talked about my leadership positions in interviews and use selling techniques used on PNMs for clients I have today!! I wish I could go back to my freshman self and beg her to reevaluate dropping out of rush.
Good Luck to the Rest!
For those of you rushing: good luck! Know that these women have prepared heavily for your arrival and enjoy your conversations. Don’t lose sleep over your decision for what house to choose on pref night. Things will work out and remind yourself this is just another experience to put under your college belt.
Need a rec letter for your recruitment? I would love to write one for you! Leave me a comment or email me and we will connect!