Unlike most major universities in the South, Greek Life and sorority recruitment at the University of Houston is a small and close knit community which accounts for a small percent of UH’s student population.
My freshman year of college I decided I would go through fall recruitment knowing little to nothing about sororities. All I knew was that I had no friends and lived off-campus meaning my odds of making friends were slim to none considering I’m not the most outgoing person. I reluctantly signed up and not-so-patiently waited for recruitment to begin.
The day had finally come and I was insanely nervous— was I pretty enough? Skinny enough? Would it even matter?— the answer to all of those questions was a resounding “no.” I’m not a size 2, I don’t look like a super model, but in the end it didn’t seem to matter.
Day 1 and 2
The first two days consist of the “Sisterhood rounds” where you meet each Chapter in a speed-dating like setting. You get a few minutes with a few girls and before you know it you’re off to the next Chapter. At the end of the second day, after you’ve met all the chapters, you rank them in order of your personal preference and wait for day 3 to commence.
“Philanthropy” round is a longer and overall more stressful day of recruitment. You will only go back to four Chapters at most and odds are they won’t all be your favorites. At each Chapter you learn about the philanthropy each one is associated with — Make a Wish Foundation, Service for Sight, Breast Cancer Awareness, etc. By the end of this day you’ll rank them again and hopefully have an idea of where you feel the most at home.
This is the last day of recruitment or more commonly referred to as “Pref.” This day you’ll only go to two houses at most, one of which will be your chapter should you choose to be initiated. You spend about an hour in each chapter typically only talking to one or two girls. Pref day is a significantly more personal experience and your conversations should be effortless, genuine and sincere. At the end of Pref you’ll rank the chapters first and second. Then comes the worst part of recruitment — waiting.
I.e. the much awaited Bid Day. On Bid Day you find out which Chapter extended you a bid which is basically the reason you went through recruitment in the first place. It’s stressful but exciting and I definitely had an anxiety attack earlier that day. You open your bid and all of sudden this seemingly distant and event has come and gone and you happily trot off to your new home.
Recruitment is by no means perfect and it’s largely a numbers game. It’s not always as personal as it feels but it’s not nearly as superficial as people assume it is. Recruitment is a process you have to trust — trust that you will find the right place for you and trust that the Chapters know who will fit in best with them. Sometimes what you think you want isn’t really what you’ve dressed it up to be and that’s true for every Chapter.