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September 29, 2023

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Greek housing renovations show no effect, positive changes

As the Greek houses stood empty behind construction fencing, recruitment events for sororities and fraternities were under way these past two weekends.

During recruitment, students interested in joining a sorority or fraternity meet with its current members and those members seek out which students they would like to join their chapter.

For sororities, this process usually takes place at least in part inside the Greek houses. With the houses under construction, formal recruitment for sororities was moved to the Union.

Panhellenic Council President Tiffany Mitchell said without the houses recruitment turned “into a blank canvas [sororities] can make their own,” so moving recruitment actually “turned into a positive.”

As far as the logistics of hosting recruitment in the Union, Vice President of Recruitment for the Panhellenic Council Abby Fisher said, “It wasn’t as complicated as we expected.”

Fraternities had a similar situation, hosting their recruitment events in the Education Building.

However, President of the Interfraternity Council Victor Senn said not having access to the houses barely affected fraternity recruitment.

“The houses actually play a very limited role in recruitment,” Senn said.

He added that students in the fraternity recruitment process usually don’t visit the houses until after they’ve signed a ‘bid,’ or an official invitation to join a certain fraternity.

The only major change, Senn said, were the “alternative and heightened promotion tactics,” such as having a registration table at SOAR this summer and holding more outdoor events.

Senn said, “We’ve had very positive feedback from people either in the process for the first time or who have been involved in the past.”

One possible negative to losing the houses could have been that it prevented students from pursuing Greek life. However, this was not the case.

Fisher said the Panhellenic Council saw no major change in registration numbers this year.

“It was pretty consistent with last year— give or take a few,” Fisher said.

“I don’t think [the housing] has deterred anyone,” she said.

According to Senn, the Interfraternity Council actually saw an increase in students signed up for recruitment.

Senn said the number of students interested in Greek life “was actually much higher than past years.”

The number of students signed up for fraternity recruitment is now passed 300, he said.

“If we are able to retain the 300 we have signed up right now, we will have over 700 men,” he said.

He added that this would be the most students in fraternities at the University since 2006.

Fisher said that moving recruitment out of the Greek houses has “had a good effect on the recruitment process so far.”

Without the houses, Fisher said sororities had to focus on making connections with their potential new members.

This year, sororities had to “really talk about their values,” she said. “They can’t hide behind what they put in their houses.”

Overall, Mitchell and Fisher agreed that recruitment is going well.

“Everyone’s really enjoying it,” Mitchell said.

Fisher said that a good recruitment process would “put everyone at ease about not having housing” and reassure everyone that Greek life still has a strong presence on campus.

Senn was equally optimistic.

“People are excited to go Greek and we are excited to have them,” Senn said.

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