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I Didn’t Get Accepted into a Sorority, but Here’s What I Learned from Rushing

When I was in high school, I didn’t know too much about sororities. I only knew about them from media and from college youtubers I had been following at the time. All I knew was that sororities have very expensive dues.

During the summer before my freshman year, I came across an article about the benefits of rushing a non-Panhellenic organization. I considered rushing but was stressed out over so many other aspects of campus that I didn’t find the chance to rush freshman year.

Throughout the year, I would see my friends posting on Instagram about their bigs and littles and the amazing family they found in their sorority. Seeing posts like those made me want a family of my own. When I returned to campus for my sophomore year, I decided to give rushing a try because I was curious about the experience as well as the possibility of finding a family of my own.

That fall, I knew for sure that I did not want to rush Panhellenic due to its high cost, so the option of rushing another kind of social sorority seemed like a good one. In the fall of my sophomore year, I rushed for Sigma Sigma Rho, a sorority centered around women of South Asian descent. I received the flyer from Turlington plaza where members were handing them out, and I decided to attend the rush events.

The first event was an info session about the sorority. Basically, at the event, I learned what the sorority was all about. I thought the sorority was pretty interesting and would be a great way to meet other south Asian women like myself.

The second event I went to for Sigma Sigma Rho was a speed-dating event, where the current members of the sorority would ask questions to the rushees about themselves. It was pretty intense, conversing with many people in a short amount of time, but it was still a great experience.

The third event I attended was a brew-your-own-facemasks DIY social, which I found really enjoyable since I love DIYs. I still have the small container with the mixture at home right now. Attending one informational and two rush events was what was required to qualify for a bid. Ultimately, I found out I was not accepted into the sorority, but I still went to the class reveal to support my fellow rushees.

The following spring, I decided to rush Phi Sigma Rho, an engineering sorority. In the previous fall, I had attended a Smore’s event hosted by them and thought it would be another great sorority to rush for since I’m a computer science major under the College of Engineering. The girls I met at the event were really nice, and I thought the sorority would be a good fit for me. I decided to follow their page on Facebook to know about upcoming events.

In the spring, the first event I went to was also a speed-dating event. The event was similar to the one last fall, except there were more people, and there was only one question per round instead of several. The second event I went to was a game night. It was a fun-filled night of playing Uno and other games with the current members and rushees. The last event I attended was dessert night, which had many sweets. After the rush events, I received an email for an interview. The interview wasn’t very stressful, and I was asked some basic questions about myself. Next, I had to wait a couple of days to see whether I was accepted. The sad email came, saying I was not accepted.

After two rejections from sororities, I was upset and didn’t feel like I was good enough as a person. Later, I realized that getting into a sorority is competitive, especially when there are so many people rushing, and it’s a challenge to be the best of a crowd of people. Also, I realized that your acceptance into a sorority does not determine your self-worth. Whether you get accepted into a sorority or not, you’re still an amazing person who has a lot to offer.

That spring, I also applied to be a features writer for Her Campus UFL. I had read Her Campus articles since I was in high school and was always inspired by their content. I eagerly submitted my application and hoped for the best. Soon, I received the email from Her Campus over winter break saying I was accepted. I was super thrilled. I could not wait to start sharing my own experiences on the site.

Ultimately, it’s disappointing that I didn’t get admitted into a sorority, but I was able to find my family elsewhere, in Her Campus UFL. I’m just starting out this semester, but I already feel welcomed by the club. In a way, I was getting everything I wanted out of a sorority but in a new way that I never knew was possible until now. I love my Her Campus UFL family and am so glad I found my place in a great organization. If you don’t get accepted into a sorority, remember there’s other organizations and teams you can get involved in and find your place on campus.

Niharika graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and a minor in Mathematics. She wrote for Her Campus UFL during her time at UF. She also wrote for Her Campus Leeds when she spent her junior year abroad at the University of Leeds in Leeds, England. She tried drinking tea when in England but is still a coffee person at heart. As a Colorado native, Niharika loves hiking, skiing, and mountain biking. In her spare time, she likes to explore her creativity through photography and drawing. 
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