Bid Day 1

How I Found Out Social Sororities Aren’t for Me and That It’s Okay

Coming into college, I was completely determined not to join a sorority. I had heard that rushing was a degrading process, that sororities have bad reputations and that people get hazed. I pictured sororities to be just like the movies, with a herd of tan, blonde girls chanting and clapping outside of a mansion.

After I got settled in at Pitt and found a wonderful group of friends, I realized I had nothing to lose by rushing. Everyone assured me that sororities at Pitt were nothing like the stereotypes and that it was a great way to meet like-minded women. It was also clear to me that I didn’t need to be in a sorority to have a social life, so it made me feel better—I could still have my old friends if I joined a sorority. I still didn’t really think I wanted to join a sorority with my busy schedule, but I was unsure. Everyone encouraged me to rush anyways just to try it out, and I agreed. If anything, I thought it would be fun to check out all the sororities, get dressed up and talk to people I had never met before.

To begin, I like how the recruitment process is in the spring semester. It gave me time to find my place at Pitt before deciding if Greek life was for me. Had I rushed in the fall, like many other schools do, I have no clue where I would have ended up, and if I would still be where I am today. The recruitment process at Pitt takes place from Thursday through Sunday over two weekends and you have to commit to pretty long hours. It is definitely a lot, but luckily it is at the beginning of the semester so your classes have only just begun. Plus, they provide lunch for two of the days. Some of my friends were also rushing which made it a lot of fun.

I was not nervous to rush. After all, I had the most amazing friends in the world to support me and sororities didn’t scare me. I’m glad I went in with the mindset of not wanting to join a specific sorority because it allowed me to keep an open mind. Plus, I knew that if things didn’t work out, I would be alright mentally.

I’m glad I went into this process with established self-confidence. I saw many girls becoming very upset when their favorite sorority dropped them, and they had to talk to the counselors. Luckily, I didn’t find myself getting upset at all. I knew that if a sorority was going to drop me, it wasn’t where I belonged. Plus, I was having fun and enjoying having conversations with many different girls. I met so many amazing women and I found it to be empowering. There did seem to be a certain type of girl that belonged in each sorority, whether it be edgy, fashionista, academic, goofy or adventurous.

The different rounds of recruitment called for different attire—there were academic, philanthropy, sisterhood and preference rounds, and it got dressier as time went on. The rounds also got longer and your list got shorter. It seemed weird to me that the girls might already know some things about you from looking at your social media before, but it was still fun to talk to them about literally anything.

I was being myself, and the girls were so uplifting and positive. I could truly see that their sisterhoods were meaningful to them. It was also hilarious that every single person was greeted with a girl speaking superhumanly fast saying “Hi welcome to ____! Meet my sister, ____!” and then quickly moving on to greet the next girl.

The amazing thing about the recruitment process for me was that I really did find a group of girls I liked. However, something about joining a sorority was still bothering me. I was still so unsure about everything, and I did not want to risk putting in so much time, effort and money just to waste it all. My intuition was screaming at me on bid day to run, but I thought I had to at least give it a fair chance.

I received a bid from my top choice, but I still had a feeling deep down that I didn’t want to commit. I noticed that I wasn’t nearly as excited as my friends were on bid day. Maybe it’s because I’m not an extrovert, but I felt so weird calling all these strangers my sisters, screaming out of excitement and taking pictures with people I had just met. I also just couldn’t picture myself in the next few years obsessing over having a little and doing Greek Sing.

It felt so overwhelming to run outside on Soldiers and Sailors Lawn. The sororities screamed at the new members at the tops of their lungs and bombarded them with gifts. However, everyone told me that bid day was overwhelming and to try it out for a few weeks before I had to pay dues.

The next thing I noticed was the time commitment involved in being in a social sorority. I had already taken on way more than I should have for the semester with my course load, research position, an honors society and my other clubs, and I instantly realized that I would have much less time to relax and do homework for my demanding classes. I noticed that my friends were okay with having less free time because being in a sorority was what they had always wanted. However, I wasn’t sure if it was worth it to me to consume my time when I was already having so many hesitations.

I also didn’t like the idea of living with a sorority, and I knew that sometimes girls can be pulled to live in the sorority suites in Amos. This made me feel uncomfortable, because I am naturally such an independent girl with a personality of “doing my own thing.” Even though I loved the vibes of all the suites I saw during recruitment and thought they would be a chill place to hang out, I didn’t think I would be okay with being told I had to live there even if I said I didn’t want to and already had other plans.

Plus, social sororities have expensive dues, and I had already found my place in plenty of other organizations on campus. I was already involved, happy and feeling fulfilled by everything I was doing at Pitt. I didn’t think I needed to add on another thing. And that’s okay.