I was that girl who said that sorority life would never be for her. I was convinced throughout my college search that the fact that Drake had Greek Life wouldn’t matter at all because I wasn’t going to be a part of it. Once I finally got on campus, I was told by my peers, upperclassmen and even faculty that I should go through formal sorority recruitment just to see if I liked it, and boy, am I glad that I did! I met so many people just by visiting all the chapters and once I stepped into the chapter that I joined, I knew almost immediately that I was meant to be there. Each sorority on Drake’s campus offers something that I didn’t realize until recruitment that I really needed: a home away from home. It sounds cheesy, but it couldn’t be closer to the truth!
If I had to do formal recruitment all over again, I would have wanted to be less nervous and more myself. Meeting all the women in the different chapters can be intimidating and I felt that I maybe wasn’t myself during a few events. It was in the chapters that I let go of my fear and acted like Mari where I had the most fun and felt the most at ease with the girls. My advice to potential new members would be to be yourself! It’s easier said than done, but it will work out so much better for you in the end if you make meaningful and personal connections with the girls you meet! Another piece of advice would be to go in with a very open mind. I did, not knowing anything about the sororities or Greek Life in general, and it made me much more accepting and loving of all the chapters. It is an exciting week and you never know what is going to happen!
Since joining a chapter, my favorite part of being in Greek Life has been seeing what big of an impact the students in Greek Life have on campus. There are Greek Student Senators, PMACs, Orientation Leaders, RHA Members, and everything in-between. A lot of the movers and shakers on campus have gained confidence and leadership through their experiences in Greek Life that have rolled over into so many other aspects and organizations at Drake. I am inspired everyday by different people on Drake’s campus. Knowing that these people I see making a difference are representing a chapter is a really cool thing!
When you go through recruitment, you’ll often hear the statement, “This place gave me a home.” And cheesy as it sounds, everyone says it because it’s true. I joined my chapter because I really needed a home in an unfamiliar place.
I’ve always been close with my family and hometown friends, and it was hard to leave them behind to explore Drake. My fall semester of my first year was intimidating to say the least and I wasn’t sure of my place on Drake’s campus. I regretted not going through recruitment when I had the chance and knew that I was missing out on a lot of new friends and new experiences.
Thankfully, through someone I now call my sister, I was introduced to my chapter and its incredibly tight-knit sisterhood. I attended events as her guest and felt immediately at home in the chapter. I returned for Vampire Diaries marathons and felt a bond forming with her sisters.
When I heard about spring recruitment, I jumped at the chance to join such a kind and loving sisterhood. It was the best decision I’ve ever made. I’ve made so many new memories and so many new friends and even got closer to old friends. Joining a chapter is one of the best things that has ever happened to me and has made my Drake experience much more exciting.
Although it’s taken some juggling, I’ve been able to balance a full course load, two part-time jobs, several activities on campus, and my involvement in my sorority. And having my sisters around for a pep talk definitely makes it easier to keep going.
I transferred to Drake as a sophomore this past fall and I knew that it was important for me to get involved and immersed in the campus community immediately. I never thought that I would join a sorority simply because I didn’t consider myself a “sorority girl.” However, I knew that Greek Life is a big part of Drake and so I thought that going through recruitment would at least be a good way to start meeting people. I realized that the majority of girls going through recruitment were first-years, so I thought that it would be a disadvantage to me as an upperclassman. With this in the back of my mind, I went through the formal recruitment process and to my surprise, each night I continued growing more and more attached to a particular chapter. Every time I went there I talked with girls who were like me and who I could see as being future friends. Thankfully, that chapter offered me a bid and I accepted without hesitation!
The hardest part about being an upperclassman going through recruitment is that everyone assumes you are first-year. You constantly are correcting others and explaining your situation. Although this can get frustrating at times, I think it is important for other upperclassmen to know that it is important that you don’t feel as if you are misplaced. You will be the minority and the exception, but at the same time your unique situation can be what sets you apart from the other girls and may make you more memorable.
I love being part of the Greek system here at Drake. I feel pride in wearing my letters and I love being a part of something larger than myself. The best part about being in a sorority is that from the minute you join, every single member has embraced you and accepted you as part of the group. Normally in life, people have to get to know you before they can accept you; in a sorority, it is the other way around, which is awesome. Already in just one semester, my sorority has provided me with countless opportunities, hundreds of fun-filled memories, and an abundance of loving, amazing sisters. And so the only bad part about joining as an upperclassman is having this incredible experience cut just a bit too short.
It is the beginning of a new semester at Drake University and the Panhellenic Recruitment Team is already very excited about 2014 Formal Recruitment. We hope you are, too!
This past week, officers on the Panhellenic Council attended the Association of Fraternal Leadership and Values Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. We returned to Des Moines with new ideas for the upcoming year and passion to share our love of being Greek. We intend to fully utilize this blog to better help you understand our enthusiasm for Greek Life—and sign up to be a part of it, too!
We hope you find this blog exciting and informative—whether you are a Potential New Member, Collegiate Greek, or Alumni Member. Check back often to find weekly posts featuring one of our Greek members, inspiring videos, or helpful information. Please feel free to leave questions on the blog or email email@example.com. We promise we will get back to you very soon! Go Greek!
In the post below, one woman from Drake’s sorority community gives a breakdown of a typical “day in the life” at her chapter. Check it out!
Living in the house is an experience unlike any other. It has brought me even closer to my sisters, taught me a lot about the give and take of relationships, and shown me how to grow together in friendship while evolving as an individual. Through the ups and the downs, triumphs and sorrows, a sister is never far away.
Check out this video from a Delta Zeta chapter in Michigan. The central message, that once you join a Greek organization, you’re always wearing your letters, holds true for every single chapter at Drake. Once you join a sorority, those letters are a part of you for the rest of your life!
Who can go Greek?… Anyone!
Eager to investigate the stereotype that Greek life was exclusive to “mannequin-like alpha ladies going around wearing disastrous costumes, kissing statues and engineering very high-end drama in order to get a T-shirt with algebraic letters,” an international student from India discovered that her misconception was far off base as she found the perfect fit in a Cornell University Greek chapter.
Check out Aditi Bhowmick’s article here!
Check out this article, written by Allie Jones, about her experience going through recruitment and how it changed her mind about Greek Life.
Check out this USA Today article about the Greek experience written by Spencer Tang-Smith, a non-Greek man who now blogs for Groopt, a social networking site originally created for Greek organizations that helps group members schedule, communicate and share effectively.