Showing posts with label Recruitment Tips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Recruitment Tips. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Why I Went Greek: Ugochi Nwaneri From Alpha Kappa Alpha

School: Eastern Michigan University
Sorority: Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated
Year You Pledged: Junior
Year Initiated: Spring 2015

What did you hear about sororities before you went through recruitment? 

I heard both positive and negative things about sororities. Obviously the positives helped me determine whether or not it was the right fit for me. I heard non appealing things such as "you're paying for fake sisters" "sorority girls party and don't get work done." On the other hand, I also heard "you build life long relationships with your sisters" "sororities participate in a lot of community service" "there are endless opportunities to network" "joining a sorority is a great way to help build your community" ... and the list goes on.

How much of it was true?

I have been fortunate to become a member of a phenomenal sorority of which I have had no negative experiences. I am blessed to be surrounded by likeminded women that achieve their academic goals while balancing extracurriculars, family and rendering service to all man kind.

What encouraged you to go through recruitment? 

After learning about all values of my sorority that are so dear to me, I stayed motivated and encouraged to get through the process. In addition, my play grandmother has been a member of my sorority since 1971. All of her involvement within the sorority as I've seen since the time I've met her not only sparked an interest but was a reminder of the greatness that was yet to come.

Favorite sorority moment?

My favorite sorority moment was the day of my probate. I was so ecstatic for the world to see that my sisters and I are now women of Alpha Kappa Sorority, Incorporated. After we finished exams, our day was spent getting "fleeky" for our show. Sorority sisters that pledged before us traveled to see us. We were surrounded with loving women that helped pave the way for us and who are the epitome of true sisters. I will never forget the day of my probate- singing and marching through campus with our gorgeous green skirts and pretty pink heels.

Any advice for anyone going through recruitment?

My advice for prospective members is to go to events pertaining to Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and of course, get to know the members. I would also familiarize yourself with the criteria of becoming a member.

Do you have questions for Ugochi? Leave them in the comments below!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Recruitment Conversation All-Star Tips

{photo credit: ASU Delta Gamma}

It's the most wonderful time of the year!  Nope, not the holidays... recruitment!  That's right, Bid Day and meeting the new additions to your chapter are right around the corner.  But before that can happen, recruitment needs to happen first.  It's time to get dressed up, sing songs, possibly lose your voice, and spend a few long days & nights with your sisters!  In all seriousness, recruitment really is our favorite time of the school year.  And, we can't forget what's most important here... the potential new members (aka PNMs).  Yes, it can sometimes feel like friendship speed-dating.  But, you're on a mission to make a connection; you're on a mission to find your new sisters.  Keep our key tips in mind, and you'll feel like a recruitment conversation all-star in no time!

#1: Make a Connection
When talking to the PNMs, your goal is to get to know them.  Make a connection!  Find out who she is, beyond just her major and what hometown she's from.  What are her interests?  What's her group of friends like from high school or back home?  What activities or hobbies does she enjoy?  Share a laugh together, break the ice.  Let her feel invited to share more about herself with you.  Tell a personal story, and encourage her to do the same.  Get to know who she is beyond the surface.  Your warm & friendly attitude will help for both of you to feel more comfortable and natural, in a setting that can sometimes feel otherwise.

#2: Ask Thoughtful Questions
Ask open-ended questions.  The PNM's replies should require more than simply a "yes" or "no" answer.  Take that question, and roll with it!  Lead it into a conversation.  Talk to her like a friend, where you each share your thoughts.  Nobody likes to have questions fired at them (which feels more like an interview) so talk about each topic a little before moving on to the next.  If you can tell she's not enthusiastic about the topic at hand, be prepared to lead into something else.  Find common ground.  Don't focus on "selling" your sorority too much; focus more on getting to know her.

#3: Topics, Topics, Topics
Okay, you're meeting a girl you have never met before, and you have to talk to her for anywhere from 5-20 minutes straight.  Piece of cake!  Have an idea of what you want to talk about, and where to take the conversation if it needs some help.  You want to have the best conversation possible with each PNM, to get to know her without the little factors (like feeling nervous) getting in the way.  Since you've been through recruitment before, you be the pro & guide her.  Here are a few favorite topics:

  • Ask her where she's from.  Lead it into a conversation about where she's traveled to, or any other places she has lived over the years.
  • Ask her how recruitment is going, how she's liking it so far.  What made her want to join a sorority?  You can share how you felt going through recruitment (keep it positive & neutral), and why you wanted to join a sorority.
  • What made her want to come to your university?
  • Is she living in a dorm?  An apartment?  Does she have a roommate?  Ask her how she likes it.  If you lived in a similar dorm or apartment, you can share about it too.  If the topic goes well, you can ask her how she decorated it!
  • What are her friends like back home, or from before coming to college?  This can lead into talking about how your organization can provide great friendships.  Make it personal-- mention the friendships you have made, and what they mean to you.  And in general, friends are a safer topic than family.  
  • Did she play any sports or do any activities in high school?  Talk about it.  For example, if she played volleyball & your chapter has an intramural team, she would probably love to know!
  • A sincere compliment on something she's wearing is great when you truly mean it.  Be mindful to not talk about shopping/clothes for too long, and lead into another topic that will help you get to know each other in a more meaningful way.  
  • A good icebreaker: favorite places to eat around campus.  
  • The "what's your major?" question is bound to happen, but try to not rely on it too much (especially after the first day of recruitment, she's been asked many times by then).  Your topics should be a well-rounded balance of school, fun, and friends.  After all, your organization is well-rounded too!
  • Partying, guys, bad words, etc... avoid them, as you probably already know!  Gracefully change the topic if it gets brought up.  There is so much more to friendship & sisterhood other than these topics, and that's what you're trying to get to know about her in a short amount of time.
  • Is the PNM funny & quirky, and you're funny & quirky?  By all means, be yourself!  Keep the conversation appropriate, and you're golden.

#4: Find A Happy Medium
Recruitment conversation is all about balancing happy mediums.  Talk about her, talk about you/your organization, laugh together, get sentimental together.  In other words, don't make it all about you or take yourself too seriously.  Stay away from the negative, focus on the positive.  Yes, complaining that your feet hurt counts as negative; be present in the moment of your conversation, instead of worrying about your feet.  Have fun and be natural, and follow your chapter's guidelines as well.  Find a balance, like the conversational flow between two friends, which brings us to our next tip...

#5: Be Friends
Once you break the ice, treat the conversation as you would with an old friend.  Give the PNM your genuine undivided attention.  Let the topics flow easily.  Be authentic.  Connect with good eye contact.  This will help both of you to be your true selves, and will also help both of you decide if your chapter is her home sweet home.

#6: Be Kind
No matter what, there's one rule of thumb-- be kind.  Be polite, be respectful, be gracious.  Treat each PNM you meet with genuine kindness, and you're already an all-star.  Great conversations make you & your house stand out, and leave a positive lasting impression for everyone!

Sure, recruitment can be stressful at times.  But more than anything, remember how much fun it is too!  It's an honor to recruit the new members that will carry on your chapter's legacy long after your graduation.  Enjoy the little moments, and each conversation.  You'll be celebrating with your new members at Bid Day before you know it!

(p.s. don't forget to check out our Master List of Bid Day Themes!)

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Spring Recruitment Tips

As winter break begins to come to a close and those of us in the Northeast prepare to trade in our fur coats and Uggs for flip flops and bikinis-a record number of girls are heading back early to take part in the amazing process that is Spring Sorority Recruitment. Unlike most schools, spring rush at the University of Miami is our pride and joy as most sororities are not allowed to recruit during the fall semester. I can remember it like it was yesterday-anxiously texting my best friend pictures of possible outfits, reading hours on end about the different reputations of the sororities at the University, and nervously biting my nails as everyone in my Rho Gamma group waited outside our first party. This spring will mark the two year anniversary since my freshman recruiting days and now that I am on the other side of things, I’d like to offer a few spring recruitment tips that I wish someone would have told me. 

As silly as this tip may sound, I couldn’t even begin to tell you the number of times I would start breathing frantically before, during, and after each recruitment party I attended. As hard as it may seem, relaxation is the key. If you go into recruitment psyching yourself out, chances are you will miss out on the opportunity to truly connect with the sorority women who have worked tirelessly to ensure that this spring recruitment is one of the best. Before entering a party, close your eyes and slowly begin to countdown from five while picturing yourself as a tight roll of paper that is slowly beginning to unwind. By the time you reach zero, you should feel calm and collected. Plus, believe it or not-the ladies on the other side of that door are just as nervous as you are! So walk into that sorority suite with confidence and in turn, you will project confidence and ease everyone’s nerves-including your own!

Although it is not explicitly stated in the dress code they give you prior to recruitment, most girls choose to wear their best pair of heels during the different days of recruitment. While those cute Jessica Simpson’s look amazing on and compliment your outfit, your feet will secretly be dying inside by the time you reach your third party. Standing up for six hours at a time does begin to take a toll-at least it did for me. After a while you start focusing on the pain shooting up the arch of your foot and begin concentrating more and more on walking then at the conversation at hand. Enter my lifesaver: Dr. Scholls for Her! This amazing brand offers a high heel insole that, when put in each heel, offer a whole new world of comfort. What is even better is that you can purchase this product at your local CVS or Walgreens! If you haven’t been introduced to the wonderfulness that is this product-I definitely recommend it; your feet will thank you later! 

By definition, a Rho Gamma is a sorority woman who has chosen to disaffiliate herself during recruitment so that she can help facilitate the recruiting process, answer any questions you might have and ultimately aid you in the decision of choosing what sorority is best for you.  During recruitment, my Rho Gamma was like a goddess-she was on call 24/7 in the event we wanted approval for outfits and was so easy going and understanding that talking to her was like talking to a childhood friend. While not all Rho Gamma’s will be like the one I was fortunate to be paired with-they are all there willing, ready, and able to help should you let them. A Rho Gamma has to apply and be interviewed before being chosen so rest assured that you are in great hands as seen by Panhellenic Council. While it may seem strange to open up to a complete stranger about what you’re feeling about certain sororities-your Rho Gamma is there to listen to you and, if you allow her, guide you to the right sorority! 

While the urge to be as prepared as you can for recruitment should and will be there, venturing onto sorority ranking sites such as is not the way to quench your curious mind. While it may be nice to see what other people are saying about the different sororities you are interested in, you have to keep in mind that most posts are outdated, can be written by the sorority women themselves, and cannot even begin to accurately sum up the heart and soul of every chapter. If you truly are interested in a sorority and want to know more, try visiting their official website, Instagram, Twitter, or  their Facebook page. Each forum is an excellent way to gauge just what that particular sorority is all about! 

You’ve chosen the most perfect outfits, you’ve done your (correct!) research, and you’ve watched any and all movies that have to do with sorority recruitment. Whatever the case may be, the one and perhaps most important tip I can leave you with is to have fun! The way recruitment at Miami and many other schools are set up is a system that both benefits you and the sororities. It is designed so that in the end, you do end up where you truly belong. If you have faith in the system like I did, then I can guarantee the rest of your time in college will be spent with the best group of women-whatever letters they may wear! So have fun, laugh a little, and use everything the Panhellenic Council and this article have given you. You only go through recruitment once-make it the best it can possibly be! 

See you ladies all on Bid Day! 

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