In just a few short weeks, thousands of women across the country will participate in one of the biggest events of the academic year: sorority primary recruitment. With the impact of the global health crisis, the process is likely to look different this year and may be virtual, in person or a combination of virtual and in-person events. Regardless, these tips still apply. Whether you are a member of a fraternity or sorority or know nothing about fraternal organizations, as a parent, you play an important role throughout the process.
- Get prepared early. It’s important for you and your daughter to research sororities on her campus. When does recruitment take place? Will the process be virtual or in person? How does your daughter sign up to participate? What are the benefits and resources? Are there housing options available? What are the financial responsibilities? What is the GPA requirement? Ask other parents who have had daughters participate in recruitment about their experiences. Visit each sorority’s local and national websites. The more educated you both become about the process, the better prepared she will be to participate and you will be to support her.
- Communication adaptability is key. Recruitment can be an emotional rollercoaster, and everyone handles the experience differently. Your daughter may want to call you after she meets each chapter’s members, or she may avoid talking about her experiences with you. Both behaviors (and everything in between) are normal! Your daughter will look to you to fill whatever role she needs you to take. In the end, she will always appreciate your love and unconditional support during this time.
- Minimize the ‘what-ifs’. Most every woman feels some pressure during the process. A lot of times, this pressure comes from ‘what-if’ scenarios: What if I don’t get an invitation to the chapter I really love? What if I don’t get a bid? What if I pick the wrong chapter? Keep fueling your daughter’s positive attitude and minimize as much as possible the pressure and frustration she is feeling, including the possibility of disappointing you. Remind her that she is loved and a unique and special individual. Encourage her to be herself!
- Encourage her to keep her options open. Recruitment is a mutual selection process. Sometimes women have set expectations of which organization they want to join after the first day of recruitment and then become closeminded to other chapters. Because the process is unpredictable, it is crucial for your daughter to keep an open mind. You can be a great mediator and inspire your daughter to give every chapter a fair shot and to trust the process. If your daughter receives a bid from an organization she is unsure about, encourage her to go to Bid Day and give that chapter a chance. The process is meant for women to be placed with chapters where they will be the happiest. In the end, your daughter will find the place where she is meant to be.
- Your daughter’s life will be changed. No matter the group she joins, your daughter will be part of an organization that will empower her, alongside other women, to become a strong, resilient and confident leader. She will gain knowledge and experience that will better equip her for the real-world all the while discovering her passions in life. Recruitment is only a portion of the membership experience and it’s just the start of your daughter’s transformation, so get excited!
Chapter Membership Specialist