This Sunday is Sorority Recruitment preview, a day for potential new members to get a feel for the recruitment experience before the real deal in January.
However, this year the preview experience will be slightly different. In the past, preview has been a pretty long day. Potential new members would basically experience all of Recruitment Set 1, which is broken up over two days in January, in one Sunday. They would visit short parties at all 12 houses throughout the day, where they would simply talk to many women in the house.
This year, recruitment preview has been changed up a bit. Now, collegiettes™ are invited into each house for a presentation about the specific sorority. They learn about their colors, symbols, and how they fit into the larger Panhellenic community. This cuts down conversation time, hopefully leaving everyone less exhausted.
Vice President of Membership for PHA, Sophie Friedman, gives us the answers to everything you need to know before walking into preview.
Why is it important for girls to go through preview before official recruitment?
This year especially we’re trying to give women an idea of what each chapter is about. I think it’s hard because we have a different recruitment process, [potential new members] spend a lot of time hearing things during fall quarter, but [preview] really gives them a chance to meet women in every chapter and hear from the chapters about what their values are, what they do on campus, how they’re involved in the Northwestern community and see if any of the chapters may be of interest to [women] during the full recruitment process. So it’s a nice process before formal recruitment just to give them a better idea of what to expect during that week.
How long does each chapter’s presentation or party last?
Each party is 15 minutes, so it’s a really speedy day and it’s a lot of fun. Each chapter will also give a presentation for about 5-7 minutes during each of the parties, just sort of giving a quick presentation on their involvements around the Northwestern community, sisterhood, scholarship service, socials that they have throughout the year and just what a typical day in a life of the sorority woman is.
Why did PHA decide to make changes to recruitment preview this year? What benefits would it bring to both the girls considering recruitment and the chapters?
We didn’t really make any major changes, but to just to make [recruitment] a shorter day and to have [women] have a more personal conversation with the woman they’re going to meet. There’s probably only going to be maybe one to two women in each chapter during preview. Most of the changes are about how long the parties are going to be. We’re also doing the forum on the same day as the preview, so instead of having [women] come in on another day on the week leading up to preview, they’re just going to have one big day. We’re so excited about the process.
What is your favorite part about the recruitment process?
My favorite part is watching women go through the process and really find a place where they have a home away from home here at Northwestern. Especially being a senior now, I see women who get to experience what I’ve experienced over the years.
What is your least favorite part about the recruitment process?
Something that tends to be a stereotype of the Panhellenic recruitment process and something that we’re working on combatting especially this year is about it being a superficial process. I think the more people get involved in the process, they realize that it’s not meant to be that way, that obviously it’s really hard for people to know exactly where the right place is for them is and I think that it can be seen as very superficial because you’re meeting so many people during a very short period of time. But I think it’s also a great experience where we can help people find that home away from home in such a short period of time.
If you had one advice to your freshman-self going into recruitment, what would it be?
Not to my freshman-self specifically but to freshmen and women who are going through the recruitment process in general, I think it’s really important to have an open mind and to really be yourself because these are the women who you’re going to spending time with not only at formals or going to social events and things like that but also when you’re hanging around the house and eating ice cream in your pajamas. So really try to think about what the best might be for you, even if it isn’t the place you originally imagined yourself in. Really keep an open mind to every chapter—although we do have the same set of values, we are also all different and quirky in our own way.
For more information, check out the Northwestern Panhellenic Website!