20 Do’s and Don’ts for Sorority Recruitment

Fall Recruitment 2016 is approaching quickly. Before you know it, herds of girls in bright dresses and heels, hundred-degree heat, scream-singing, and chanting will occupy TCU’s campus for five long days. This is often a very stressful time for everyone involved, especially the PNM’s (Potential New Members). But fear not! I’ve thrown together a list of everything I wish someone had told me before I began my recruitment experience.


1.     Deodorant, deodorant, deodorant! I cannot stress enough how important this is. You will be walking around all day in the scorching Texas heat, and everyone will be up in each other’s business. Girls will be right up in those pits so reapply deodorant throughout the day to fight off that B.O.


2.     Don’t look up houses online. This is a big one. Every house is different at every school, and everyone has their own opinions. If you look up a TCU house’s reputation online, so many different things will come up. Nothing can be trusted. Nothing. So click out of that search window, and don’t go into recruitment biased against a house you know nothing about.


3.     Don’t talk about boys. Going through recruitment is about finding your sisters. No one wants to hear about the boy you hooked up with last week, and no one wants to talk about how hot frat boys are during recruitment. Recruitment is made for girls to find out more about each other, not their boyfriends. Leave the boys out of the conversation!


4.     Don’t talk about alcohol. Just don’t. Odds are you aren’t 21, you won’t look cool, and you’ll be judged. Just don’t.


5.     Don’t talk badly about ANY sororities. Word gets around and girls talk. Always be kind towards all houses. Besides, every sorority here at TCU is wonderful in its own way. If you bash sororities during rush, especially to a recruiter, odds are you won’t win them over.


6.     Go in with a completely open mind. I feel like this needs to be reiterated. A lot of girls have preconceived notions about good houses and bad houses and where they want to be before they even walk through the doors on the first day. Many girls think recruitment is about getting into the “top” house. That isn’t what it’s about. It’s about finding your home at TCU, finding a place you fit into, and finding people you will love.


7.     Be completely honest. Toward the end of the week, you will have fewer houses to visit. The conversations with the recruiters will become deeper and longer. You will talk about philanthropy, scholarship, and your personal life. It’ll be less “What’s your major?” and more “What’s your story?” Eventually, toward the very end, houses will start to ask you whether they are your top choice. DO NOT LIE. Do not tell more than one house that they are your top choice. If two houses want you and you tell them both they are your top choice, not only is it flat-out dishonest, but they will also find out. Instead, find a nicer way to word it. “Oh I’m still deciding on where I feel most at home”, “I love it here so much, I’m just not quite positive where I feel most at home yet,” “I love the conversations I’ve had here and the girls I’ve met, I just feel another house is a better fit for me.” Honesty is always best.


8.     Be unique and make sure you will be memorable. Don’t just talk about where you are from and your major. You want this girl to walk away from you and remember your face. Recruitment is very quick and girls have to remember a lot of faces, you want yours to be the easiest to recall. Ask your recruiter about her hobbies, talk about things you have in common, and be genuine. Let the conversation flow naturally and always be gracious.


9.     Be very kind, even if you aren’t interested in the house. I can’t stress enough how important it is to always be kind to the girls you are talking to. Even if you aren’t interested in the house, show some respect. After all, if a house weren’t interested in you wouldn’t you still want to be treated like you matter? No one likes a standoffish girl that thinks she’s too good for the house she is in. Always, always, always be nice.


10.  Don’t dirty rush. If you know a girl that is already in a house at TCU, DO NOT talk about recruitment. Don’t talk about anything having to do with sororities. If it’s May and you’re rushing in the fall, any recruitment talk being exchanged with a PNM is strictly forbidden. If you still have questions about what exactly dirty rushing entails, you can visit this link.


11.  Go in knowing what you are going to talk about. Don’t wing it. I promise you that you will be stuck in a conversation and draw blank on what you can talk about. Always have a handful of different topics at the ready so you aren’t stuck in awkward silence.


12.  Don’t be offended if a house cuts you. This is probably the hardest rule to follow. Just try to remember that even though you’ve been cut from a house, it doesn’t mean that the girl you talked to the day before doesn’t like you! For all you know, she wanted you to come back, but there simply wasn’t enough room and they had to cut more people. There are tons of reasons why girls can get cut from houses even when they think the houses loved them. Yes, it can feel like you’ve been dumped, but don’t hold a grudge against that house. Thank them instead… because you’re one house closer to finding the right house for you.


13.  Remember that the system works. I heard Rho Gammas saying this all through recruitment and I definitely had trouble believing it. But coming from the other side now, I can’t believe how right they were. I got cut from houses I could really see myself in, but I can’t imagine myself anywhere other than the house I’m in now.


14.  Remember that the girls recruiting you are just as nervous. Recruitment is fun, but it is also very intimidating. I remember the feeling of my heart racing as I walked in and out of the doors of different houses each day. Try not to forget that the recruiters are nervous as well, they want you to like them just as much as you want them to like you.


15.  Smile, smile, smile! Even when it’s hot and nasty and you’re tired from all of the walking- SMILE. It’s so important. Not only has physically smiling had a psychological effect and is actually proven to make you happier, it also sends a good impression. You want the girls to know you are thrilled to be there. You are happy to stand in the burning heat with blisters on your heels and covered in sweat, because you get to talk to them.


16.  If you are worried, talk to your Rho Gamma. This is what Rho Gams are for. If you need any help at all they will be there. Utilize them. They are all undercover sorority girls and they know the system, they can help you. I remember going through recruitment and having panic attacks because I felt like I wouldn’t get asked back to my top house. I became very close with my Rho Gam and she would talk me down from my anxiety-ridden state. I don’t know what I would have done without her.


17.  If a house is your top choice, it’s okay to tell them! Don’t be afraid to be open and honest with the girls you are speaking to throughout recruitment. If their house is at the top of your list it is always best to tell them. You are more likely to get asked back if you are thrilled to be there and let them know how much you adore their chapter.


18.  Don’t be pressured to pick a certain house. A lot of girls have trouble with this one. If your family was involved with Greek life, don’t feel obligated to follow in their footsteps and pick the house they were in. Recruitment is about finding a place that you fit in to, don’t just pick a house because you are a legacy. Don’t get me wrong, I am a legacy in the house I am in now, but I did not pick it because my mom was in it as well. I picked it because I fell in love with it.


19.  Be genuine. Be as genuine as possible. Every girl can sense when you are being fake and houses do not want fake girls. Laugh a lot, but not if you don’t find it funny. Smile a lot, but don’t over do it. If you are talking about something serious, don’t laugh and smile because it won’t be genuine. You want a house to love you for you, so always show them who you really are. 


20.  Relax. This is going to be one of the hardest weeks of your life, but you will create so many different friendships and bonds with the girls you are going through recruitment with, as well as the girls that you meet on bid day. I met my best friend on bid day, and we have been attached at the hip ever since. I can’t say I would even know her if it wasn’t for the fact that we were in the same sorority. Relax and realize that, in the end, you’ll end up exactly where you’re meant to be. That is the point of recruitment, after all!



So—when you are stressed about where you will get asked back, when you are freaking out over the strap on your dress breaking, or the back sweat, or the small talk, or any of the other things that make Recruitment Week hell, just remember that it will ALL be worth it. So take a deep breath and enjoy the crazy ride. You only have to go through it once.


For more info about TCU sorority recruitmnet, check out this link. Also, be sure to check out the TCU Panhellenic Pinterest for fashion ideas!



Photo Source: TCU 360