Going Into college means having the opportunity to join Greek Life.
The start of college is a time for starting new things and meeting new people.
Greek Life provides an opportunity for both. However, two freshmen women had very different outcomes by the end of recruitment week.
Speech pathology major Abbie Barker and Kelly Jones were sure joining a sorority was the right choice for them.
“I wanted to meet a group of girls in a more close setting because, coming to campus, I thought it would provide a smaller setting where I could just get to know some people,” Barker said.
“I heard it was really relaxed and a unified Greek community so it’s not as intimidating as (some of the other schools).”
With this is in mind, she began the process of joining a Greek organization.
Jones, who for the purposes of this article is operating under a pseudonym, had similar reasons to getting involved in a sorority.
“I wanted to at first because everybody told me it was the best decision that I’ll ever make and you’ll meet so many people,” she said. “But once I got into it, I realized there was a lot more to it than just meeting people.”
At the start of the recruitment process neither knew what to expect.
When it came to deciding which chapters to keep during selections, both girls relied on which sorority they had the best feelings about.
“I didn’t really know anything about any of them,” Barker said. “I wasn’t really wanting a certain one the whole time. Some girls come wanting a specific one so I was more flexible.”
Jones was one of those students who knew which one she wanted.
“Coming into (recruitment) there was a lot of hearsay but more into the days it became a lot more about their charity and philanthropy.
I love all of them but where do I see myself benefiting and helping and where do I want to be?” Jones said. “As the days continued on, it became about where do I see my personality fitting in with these girls.”
Near the end of the process Barker started to feel she found her place.
“Being cut help me make my decision and I was kind of down to two, (and) then Sunday I knew which one I wanted,” Barker said.“It wasn’t a specifi c moment just going into that day. I was like, yeah, I’m going Tri Delt.”
Around the same time, things started to go downhill for Jones.
Monday night both girls were down to two sororities and knew which one best fi t them. They both told the sorority they did not want that there was another chapter they wished to join.
“I was nervous when I had to tell some of the girls that I talked to (from one sorority) that I wanted to go Tri Delt because I felt bad, even though they were so happy for me to pick which one I wanted and which one I felt like I fit in.” – Barker
Jones said that a Gamma Chi told her that is how recruitment is supposed to work. Yet, she had a different experience when she verbally turned down one of her final chapters.
On Monday Jones told one of her final two that she didn’t see herself as part of their sisterhood for the second night in a row.
“I kept telling them to the point of being rude that I didn’t see myself in their sorority, but they kept bringing me back,” Jones said.
Rather than risk getting a bid from that sorority, Jones cut them from her fi nal list and left herself with the chance to get a bid from only one sorority—the chapter she wanted from the beginning. This put her at risk to not get a bid at all.
Her receiving a bid depended on if the sorority she did not want lowered her ranking on their list or cut her all together.
“They tell you that your decision matters but really (their decision) matters more,” Jones said.
The sorority she did not want kept her on their bid list.
She would have received a bid from them, but because she removed them from her selection list it was not a match and she was left without a bid. “I told them I didn’t want them,” Jones said.
“If they would have lowered me or dropped me, I would have gotten (the sorority I wanted),” Jones said.
Barker’s time going through recruitment ended successfully at Bid Day.
Once she opened her envelope she was overwhelmed by the excitement of the other girls surrounding her.
She drew three deltas on her cheek before participating in the run to her new house.
“(Tri Delta) is what I ended up with, which is great,” Barker said,“It was fun when we got to see all of the active members inside of the Village.”
With the conclusion of another recruitment week, many female students have found their niche within Greek Life.
Though she was prevented from joining the sorority she wanted, Jones said her perspective of Greek Life is not all bad.
For both Barker and Jones, this process will affect the rest of their college experience.