If voted in by TCU Panhellenic this semester, Phi Mu could be introduced next fall, said Katelin Rae, coordinator of Fraternity and Sorority Life.
Phi Mu would be the second organization added since TCU Panhellenic started the extension process in 2011. Alpha Omicron Pi was the first.
“AOPi was added because more women are interested in joining the Panhellenic community,” Margaux Hebert, TCU Panhellenic president, said. “Because we would like to keep our pledge classes at a comfortable size, we need to expand.”
The addition of another sorority has been planned for a while, Rae said.
“When TCU Panhellenic opened for extension in 2011, they reviewed materials and voted on a stacked extension, meaning they would bring one organization first and then invite a second organization within the next few years,” Rae said. “The extension committee extended the first invitation to Alpha Omicron Pi and extended a second invitation to Phi Mu to form a chapter at a later date.”
More than 990 women went through formal recruitment this year. TCU Panhellenic’s executive council said they warned the potential new members that they would not be guaranteed a bid because there were not enough spots for them to fit chapter quotas.
“This was a record year for women going through recruitment,” Hebert said.
This was also the first year that women were not guaranteed a bid, Austin Seewald, vice president of recruitment operations, said.
“In the past, we told them that if they maximized their options throughout the entire process, they will be guaranteed a bid on bid day,” Seewald said.
But this year, that language was eliminated because some women had to be released from the recruitment process, Seewald said. There were also women who received a bid but were not happy with it.
Some of these women “are choosing to go through continuous open bidding right now, or maybe in the future they will choose to participate in continuous open bidding in the spring semester,” Seewald said.
For the women who did not accept or receive a bid, the possibility of Phi Mu being added to campus is good news.
TCU Panhellenic is the largest female organization on campus and is continuing to grow, Hebert said.
“We are very proud of our Greek community,” Hebert said. “The ratio of sorority women to non-affiliated sorority women is 1:1.”
TCU won a national award this year for its continued Panhellenic success. TCU was one of 11 schools—and the only school in Texas—to receive the National Panhellenic Conference College Panhellenic Excellence Award, Hebert said.
“[It] just means that we are one of the top Panhellenic chapters in the United States and Canada,” Hebert said.
The attention draws in more potential new members, making it much more difficult for the women going through recruitment to get into their preferred sororities. This year was the most competitive.
TCU Panhellenic said it wants to create more opportunities for women to join its community. The exact timeline of when Phi Mu will be introduced to campus will be voted on this semester by TCU Panhellenic Council.
“Once the timeline has been voted on there will be a campus announcement and lots of public relations to welcome the new group as we get closer to their arrival,” Rae said.