Quality vs. Quantity? Honesty vs. Faked Love?
Before the spring semester began for 2015, I was voted into the Vice President of Membership Recruitment position within my chapter of Alpha Omicron Pi. Just like every year before, I preached about “Quality vs. Quantity” and being honest with our potential new members. I read from our ritual book to our members to remind them of the values that we hold dearest to our hearts within AOΠ. I always like to believe that as having held the office of Keeper of the Ritual and trying to live by our ritual, that I have made a difference in some of the lives of the ladies I was an active member with.
Before the 2015 spring semester began, I wrote up an article/blog post for my Tumblr blog that aired out some of the things I find completely hypocritical about how recruitment is played out. I’m in no way trying to say I want to take back those words due to the fact I still find that some ladies within a chapter still fake loving one another so that potential new members believe that we’re all one big happy family when this is not the case. Now I know this sounds like I’m airing those beliefs out again, when in truth I’m not.
Greek Life has been followed by stereotypes for years, even now that most groups no longer function how movies and society have pictured us. For the National Panhellenic Organizations, the hazing that once spread rampant in the twenty-six organizations has come to close. I am more than certain that there are isolated incidents that take place – some unknowingly so – but society doesn’t know about them typically.
With sorority recruitment gearing up in the following months, I ask for the ladies of their organizations to be the pillars of the community that we are supposed to be. Be civil to those you do not get along with – especially if said person is on the other side of recruitment. Say hi to everyone, even if they don’t respond to you. Who knows what that could lead to? A blossoming friendship with a new sister or making someone’s day a million times better. Remember the qualities that your founders set forth in your ritual. It is the bible of your organization. We are founded upon principles that should guide us for the rest of our lives. These experiences in Greek life shape us for the real world or at least they should if we’re doing the sorority thing right.
Remind your potential new members that wearing those letters don’t just get them recognition with alumnae from the organization or free stuff from fraternity boys just because they think they’re cute. Those letters are the letters of their founders. Those letters represent a century or more of history from post- Civil War America to the suffragettes fighting for our right as women to vote.
My plea to those looking for their new members is to remember that certainly some of your chapters – if not at a smaller school- are required to reach a quota. Wouldn’t you rather have that quota be filled with amazing ladies who exude the qualities laid forth by your founders? Or would you rather have the superficial looks? There is no longer a “sorority girl” mold, ladies. Trust me, we broke it after the 1990s. It’s a new dawn, ladies. We need to stand by one another and stop going for the mean words that usually crop up first when we see something we don’t like about another lady. We should recondition ourselves to praise them for being happy with themselves! It’s one of my favorite things when I go on Instagram and I see my friends posting selfies. They’re feeling great about themselves and all I can think is “Go you! You’re in love with yourself today and you should be!”
My plea to the sorority women – active or alumnae advisers – pick the ladies that exude the inner qualities of your organization. Be honest with the ladies going through recruitment. Yes, there is drama in sororities. We’re women and it will happen! But if you acknowledge the problem as a chapter and move towards the door to fixing it, then it won’t be a problem. Who knows, maybe your new members will surprise you with ways to fix it. Welcome them with honesty and love them for being them. Why else would you pick them to join if they didn’t have the qualities of your organization? Why else would you pick them if there wasn’t something there pull out and foster growth in?
Just love your sisters, ladies, and show the new members that there is more to sorority life than just the parties and the stereotypes. It’s a lifelong commitment with the blessings of having sisters across not only the nation but across the world. Search for the qualities that make them right for the organization and give them the honesty that they deserve. Because we’re future leaders and the more honesty we practice now the easier it will be when we’re making a better future for our daughters.
Honesty, Quality… All the makings of a great recruitment season.