Are you Ready To Rush? How Social Media Can Help Your Sorority Recruitment Process
Two summers ago #BamaRush took Tik Tok by storm and we got a glimpse into what the recruitment process is like at the University of Alabama. In fact, in August of 2021, it was hard to scroll on your “for you page” and not see a “get ready for me video” made by a potential new member (“PNM” for short) preparing for a rush event. The Tik Tok community was fascinated by these hopeful young women looking to join sororities at the University of Alabama as they shared what they were wearing and bringing to each party.
For most colleges and universities, rush is a pretty big deal. But according to the university, the UA Greek community comprises 36% of the undergraduate student body and is the largest fraternity and sorority community in the nation, making the process an even bigger deal at UA than anywhere else.
Tik Tok fell in love with quite a few PNMs as they documented their journey on app. The girls primarily shared cute and fun “outfit of the day (OOTD)” and “what’s in my rush bag” videos, but as rush went on and became more intense, girls began to also light onto the not so glamorous part of rush where they were rejected by their dream house and the drama that had occurred.
This phenomena became so popular and such an obsession among Tik Tok users that other universities such as Auburn, Clemson and Georgia are now capitalizing on the internet’s fascination with the recruitment process and are documenting their own rush experiences as well.
What is Rush/Rushing?
In general terms, rush is the process by which college or university sororities select new members to join their organizations. This process usually occurs at the beginning of the academic year, or semester, and involves a series of structured events and interactions between the PNMs and members of the sororities. The goal of rush is to allow both the sororities and the PNMs to get to know each other better and determine whether there is a good fit between the individual and the sorority. Though the process varies from university to university and from sorority to sorority, it follows the structure of “rounds” that are essentially parties where both PNMs and sorority members are evaluating each other to determine compatibility. Sororities consider factors such as values, personality, involvement, and potential contributions to the organization, and PNMs assess whether a particular sorority’s culture, values, and activities align with their own interests and aspirations. On the final round, known as “Bid Day” PNMs receive invitations (bids) to join specific sororities.
How Can I Prepare to Rush?
At the University of Alabama, applying to rush is almost as intense as the actual process. It is required to have a high school GPA of 3.87, a college GPA of 3.6, an average ACT score of 25 or an average SAT score of 1171. You must submit your resume and it is highly recommended to submit multiple letters of recommendation.
In addition to academic requirements, social media plays a crucial part in the rush process and can make or break your bid.
1. Build Your Brand Beforehand
Getting a bid is all about your reputation. Your social media profiles offer insight into your personal life and are seen as a reflection of your character. It’s extremely important for sororities to select PNM’s that align with their values and will represent them in a positive light. Additionally, social media has such an immense reach that content has the potential to go viral within minutes. This is essential for young women who are rushing to understand because a seemingly harmless post can be misinterpreted and lead to negative attention. If your content consistently portrays you as immature and raises questions about your character, no sorority will not want to associate with you and you will not be given a bid.
It’s important to research which sororities you are interested in before the process begins because knowing which sorority best aligns with your values will allow you to produce content specific to that sorority.
2. Clean up Your Social Profiles
While social media can have a positive impact on your overall sorority experience, one post can ruin yours and your chapter’s reputation. While the National Panhellenic Council does not have a social media policy, just about every chapter across the nation does and violations come with consequence. Common social media violations include:
- Inappropriate Language
- Posting Confidential Information
- Negative Comments about the Chapter
- Posting Inappropriate Content
- Violation of Privacy
- Unapproved Use of Sorority Symbols and Logos
Just like a hiring manager, most sorority recruiters stalk all your social profiles before admitting you to speak to a member. Before you submit your application to your college or university’s primary sorority recruitment and embark on the journey of rush, take a minute and clean up your social media accounts!
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