A year ago, I would never have imagined myself in a college sorority. During my college search, however, I visited a few sorority houses on various campuses and decided to participate in recruitment, simply to meet people if nothing else. My mom was in a sorority at another university, but said that she just joined because her sister was in it. And that was all I had to go on as I began the process.
So I moved down to Fort Worth nearly a week earlier than the non-rushing girls and the majority of the boys and grudgingly awoke and showed up wearing my white Panhellenic Recruitment t-shirt at precisely 9:00 a.m. on Monday. My reason for not being quite as excited about recruitment as many of the other girls was that I did not, and still don’t, classify myself as the “typical sorority girl.”
Because like it or not, sororities have a national stereotype of being full of blondes who do nothing but party and overuse the word “like.” I wear Chaco sandals on a daily basis, prefer not to wear much makeup, won’t drink a sip of alcohol, and have a one-piece swimsuit tan from camp counseling that would blind the naked eye.
By the second day, I had fallen madly in love with three of the eleven houses and had them ranked 1, 2, and 3. I was sure that if every other house dropped me, those three would still remain.
Wednesday morning my schedule indicated that my number one house had dropped me. I was devastated. The fact that I was emotionally invested even the slightest bit was a huge surprise to me. So I began to focus in on my number two house, which soon became my number one.
Predictable, I know. Thursday morning: dropped by my number one house. Same reaction, surprised as ever.
So halfway through the week, I was wishing I hadn’t signed up for recruitment in the first place. Little did I know that there were many other girls going through the same second guessing ordeal.
“The first day I fell in love with a certain house and I was set on it. Obsessed. I was asked back the second day and was thinking, ‘Perfect. They want me too.’ But then, the third day, they did not want me. And I was sad and a little disappointed,” freshman pre-med major and new Kappa Alpha Theta member Emily Dudney said.
When I walked into what was now my first choice house, Sigma Kappa, on that last day, I realized why I had been cut from the other two. I was so blindly focused on my number one house, and then my number two, that I was unable to see just how perfectly I belonged in my third choice. I can already see that I wouldn’t have fit in nearly as well in any of the other houses as I do in Sigma Kappa. Recruitment week was a blessing in disguise.
“I love Greek life. It has helped me become more involved around the TCU campus. I feel more connected,” junior fashion merchandising and journalism double major and Sigma Kappa Member Seannie Nahas said.
All week we listened to the Rho Gammas, or recruitment guides, tell us their stories about how they got cut from their top choice and ended up in the right house. They reminded us to “trust the system, the system works.” Senior film, television and digital media major Megan Joseph was one of the Rho Gammas for my group, all of whom have a lot of insight from being on both the recruitee and recruiter side of rush.
“We understand that this can be a hard week, we have all been there. You can have a great conversation with a girl and you get really excited about that sorority and then the next day they aren’t on your schedule. It happens to everyone,” Joseph, a Kappa Kappa Gamma member said.
“If there is one thing that we say the most is that they have a great schedule, because we honestly believe they do. You can’t go wrong here at TCU with which sorority you join.”
Honestly, there were times when I thought what they were all saying was a bunch of crap. Like they rehearsed that line or something. But, well, what can I say? The system works. Really, it does. And anyone, even so-called “granolas” like myself have a place to fit in somewhere in the Greek at TCU.
Claire Shelton is a Spanish and journalism double-major from Tulsa, Oklahoma.