Frequently Asked Questions Concerning Recruitment

 

Panhellenic Sorority Recruitment

Where can I learn about the next Panhellenic Sorority Recruitment process?

Refer to the Panhellenic Association Recruitment page for the most updated information about the joining process for Panhellenic sororities. This includes information about recruitment eligibility requirements, how to register, dates of recruitment, and much more.

How does the formal recruitment process for PA sororities work at Elon?

Every woman who registers for recruitment will be assigned a Recruitment Counselor (Pi Chi). Recruitment Counselor’s are members of a sorority, but have chosen to be disassociate from their chapters during winter term and through recruitment. Their purpose is to assist and support potential new members (PNMs) through the recruitment process. Recruitment Counselor’s receive extensive training and preparation to help them mentor PNMs participating in recruitment. During recruitment, women will meet daily with their Recruitment Counselor.

Round 1: Philanthropy – PNMs will attend events with each of the nine Panhellenic sororities. At the end of the day, PNMs will rank the chapters based on which they are most interested in returning to the next day, while at the same time, each chapter will enter their preferences of the PNMs they would most like to invite back for round 2. This process is called “mutual selection.”

Round 2: Sisterhood – PNMs will be invited back to UP TO a maximum of six chapters (though some may receive fewer invitations). At the end of this day, PNMs will again rank the chapters based on which they are most interested in returning to the next day, while each chapter will enter their preferences of the PNMs they would most like to invite back for round 3.

Round 3: Preference – PNMs will be invited back to UP TO a maximum of two chapters (though some may receive fewer invitations). After events that day, PNMs will rank order the one or two sororities that they would be willing to accept a bid from. The sororities will also select the women they would like to extend bids to.

Bid Day – PNMs will be notified that morning if they will not be receiving a bid. PNMs are eligible to receive one bid and PNMs who will be receiving a bid will gather to open their bid cards, and then participate in chapter hosted events until 5:00 pm that day.

At any time in this process, women are free to withdraw from recruitment activities.

Can transfer students participate?

Transfer students who meet the eligibility requirements with at least 12 credits completed at another institution are eligible to participate in recruitment. Spring semester admit students are not eligible to participate in formal recruitment. Questions about transfer student eligibility should be directed to Student Involvement, 336-278-7214.

What does the term “mutual selection” mean?

Mutual selection means that at the end of each day, while PNMs are ranking which chapters they would most like to visit the next day, the sorority chapters are also selecting which women they would most like to invite back the next day. This process is much like a job interview – so while you are trying to decide if this is a place you want to work, the company is also trying to find the best fit for their organization. Unfortunately, a company may only have a certain number of job openings and it’s not always possible to offer a position to every person who is interested. Please be assured, the system is designed to work in favor of the PNM, and takes her interests into account before considering the interests of the sorority chapters. This process uses a computerized system that is determined by the National Panhellenic Conference, the governing body for all of our sororities that participate in recruitment.

How many women will participate in recruitment and how many women will be offered a bid by each chapter?

We expect between 600-700 women to participate in the next formal recruitment process. The number of PNMs who are offered a bid to each chapter depends on how many PNMs complete the preference round and sign a bid acceptance agreement. New member classes vary in size every year and there is no set number before recruitment begins. This process is dictated by the National Panhellenic Conference, which has the goal of maintaining an even distribution of membership across all organizations on any given campus. Not everyone will receive their first choice of an organization to join. We encourage all potential new members to go through this process with an open-mind about all nine organizations, and be willing to consider membership in any of our sororities.

Will everyone who participates receive an invitation (bid) to join an organization?

Unfortunately, not all women will receive an invitation to join an organization. This happens for two reasons. The majority of women who do not receive an invitation decide to withdraw from the process at some point. Many of those students had their hearts set on a particular organization, and when that chapter is no longer an option for them, they choose to withdraw rather than look at the other organizations. There are also some PNMs who are released at some point during the process and do not receive a bid for membership. This is usually because a student did not “maximize her options,” meaning that the student was unwilling to consider membership in one of the sororities that was interested in her. Last year, about 90% of women who started the process received and accepted a bid.

I am a legacy, am I guaranteed a bid?

No, legacies (women who have a direct relative that is a member of a sorority) are not guaranteed a bid. Each inter/national organization has its own policies about legacies and that process is administered by the chapters in consultation with their alumnae advisors. PNMs will have the opportunity to designate legacy information when they complete registration.

Do I need recommendation letters? Where can I send them in?

Recommendation letters are not required for any of our organizations at Elon. If you have a special connection to one or two organizations you can submit a letter of recommendation (ex. Mother/grandmother was in a particular organization and wants to write a letter), but you definitely do not have to have letters of recommendation.

If you choose to have a letter of recommendation sent, please check with the inter/national organization for any specific forms they may have. Letters can be sent to:

Student Involvement
2973 Campus Box
ATTN: (Sorority Name)
Elon, NC 27244

OR

Email to: studentinvolvement@elon.edu

What support mechanisms are in place for women who withdraw from the process or don’t receive invitations or a bid?

Each PNM will be assigned a Recruitment Counselor (current sorority member) who will provide direct support, meeting with her regularly leading up to and throughout the process. If a student is very upset about the process or would like additional assistance, the Recruitment Counselor will help connect the student with professional staff resources. Staff members in Student Involvement will also be present to oversee the entire recruitment process and support anyone who needs assistance.

Additionally, our Counseling Center, our Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life and a student’s residential area Community Director are all great resources to help her process her experience.

If a woman refuses to accept a bid from a sorority, can she join a different chapter? What about fall or informal recruitment?

If a woman is offered a bid during formal recruitment and then declines that bid, she cannot join another sorority at Elon for one calendar year. If she accepts a bid, but leaves the sorority BEFORE she initiates, the same one-year calendar rule applies. Once a woman initiates into a sorority, she is bound to that organization for a lifetime and cannot join a different organization, even if she discontinues her membership.

Fall informal recruitment (known as Continuous Open Recruitment) is only available to those chapters who have an opening. There is no guarantee that any chapters will participate in informal recruitment each semester, and typically there are only a few spots available if a chapter does participate. We do not recommend that a PNM withdraws from formal recruitment in hopes that a particular chapter is an option in the fall. However, any student who withdraws before signing a preference card is eligible to participate in fall informal recruitment.

If a woman signs a preference card and receives a bid from any chapter she lists on the form, per National Panhellenic Conference agreement, she is bound to that chapter for one calendar year.

How much does it cost to be in a sorority?

Each organization sets their own dues structure, including inter/national organization and chapter dues. The first semester a student joins is usually the most expensive. New member costs range from approximately $570 – $800, depending on the organization. Semester dues range from approximately $400 – $525. Chapters will share financial information during the recruitment process, but PNMs should ask questions they have about potential costs. Many chapters offer payment plans as well.

In addition to chapter financial obligations, there are two Elon fees that are charged so the University may maintain chapter houses and support the fraternity/sorority program. These fees are charged to each student’s tuition bill.

  • $60 New Member Fee (One time fee assessed the semester AFTER a student joins)
  • $145 per member per semester for chapters housed in full houses (which applies to all nine Panhellenic chapters); Each member is charged regardless of whether or not they live in the house

Does a student have to join a sorority or fraternity to have a social life?

We hear students say this sometimes, but we do not believe that is true. Elon has over 250 student organizations, a vibrant Student Involvement office, a CONNECTions team to help student get connected on campus, a Center for Leadership with programs accessible to all students, and a nationally recognized service and civic engagement program that offer many opportunities for students to be involved on-campus and create social networks. Many students who have active social lives and are very engaged in campus life are not members of fraternities or sororities.

Once a student joins a chapter, how long is the “pledge” process?

Elon designates that all fraternities and sororities have a new member program that lasts a maximum of six weeks. All chapters are required to meet with staff in Student Involvement to discuss their new member education plan, along with a schedule of events, prior to recruitment. All chapters must initiate their new members by the end of that six-week period, which is typically around spring break.

I’ve heard fraternities and sororities haze. How does the University respond to allegations of hazing?

The university will investigate any reports of hazing. Hazing is a violation of the Elon University Honor Code and can be a violation of North Carolina state law. The university will hold accountable any student group or individuals who are found responsible for hazing. Parents and students are encouraged to report incidents they believe are hazing through the hazing hotline 336-278-HAZE (4293), via email, or the online reporting form. The more specific the information that is provided (organization, types of activities, location, date/time, etc.) the better able the university is to conduct an investigation. Please refer to the university’s Hazing Prevention website for more information.

What should students consider before joining a fraternity or sorority?

Students should explore why they want to join a values-based sorority and be honest about their own preferences and limitations. Fraternity or sorority membership does not mean that a student will automatically have better grades, be better time managers, or be happier with their Elon experience. All of our organizations have responsibilities for membership, and students who have struggled with academics or with time management will need to be proactive in developing a plan to balance new commitments. All members of the fraternity/sorority community must commit to upholding the values of our community:

  • Intellectual Development
  • Effective Leadership
  • Responsible Citizenship
  • Inclusive Environments
  • Values / Ethics Integration

What is the best advice you would give a student going through recruitment?

First and foremost, students should be themselves. All students should enter the process with an open-mind and be willing to consider membership in any of our chapters. Students are often surprised to learn that chapter stereotypes are not always accurate, and they find great things about all of our organizations. Students should spend some time before recruitment reflecting on personal values and what they’re looking for in a group, and that will help them find the best fit. Finally, students should get as much rest as possible before and during the process, eat on a regular basis, and if exercise is part of their daily routine, find some way to fit that in as well.

What are the benefits of joining a sorority?

All of our sororities were founded as values-based organizations. They all share the goals and values of scholarship, philanthropy and service, betterment of an individual, and sisterhood. Sororities can serve as a support system for students and provide opportunities for involvement. There are more than 250 leadership positions in the fraternity/sorority community through chapter officer and council executive roles. The experience that students can gain through these organizations and leadership roles can complement the college experience and provide numerous networking opportunities.

 

IFC Fraternity Recruitment

Where can I learn more about the next IFC Fraternity Recruitment Process?

Returning and transfer students can participate in fall recruitment, while all students (including first-years) can participate in spring recruitment.

Refer to the IFC Recruitment page for the most updated information about the joining process for IFC fraternities. This includes information about recruitment eligibility requirements, how to register, dates of recruitment, and much more.

When can I move into my residence hall room for spring recruitment?

Since recruitment does not occur until after the spring semester has begun, students participating in recruitment follow the same move-in procedures as all on campus residents. The residence halls will be closed over winter term break (commonly referred to as “fake break”), which is the break between winter term and spring semester.

How does the formal recruitment process for fraternities work at Elon?

Any student interested in participating in recruitment must first register online via the Student Involvement website. The recruitment process begins with a required Potential New Member (PNM) Convocation event. Throughout the remainder of the week, our nine IFC fraternities host events for interested PNMs. That schedule of events will be sent to all registrants who have been confirmed as eligible for recruitment. PNMs can attend open house events for any chapter they are interested in joining, and are not limited to only attending one chapter’s events.  The process will culminate with a Bid Day on the Sunday recruitment week.

How many men will participate in recruitment and how many men will be offered a bid by each chapter?

We expect 200-250 men to participate in spring recruitment each year. The number who receive bids changes each year as there is no set minimum or maximum number of bids for each fraternity chapter. In general, most groups will offer bids to 15-25 men each.

Men can receive bids from multiple organizations, and then decide which invitation they would like to accept. Unfortunately, not all men will receive an invitation to join an organization.

What support mechanisms are in place for men who don’t receive a bid?

Men who will not be receiving a bid on the last day of the process will be notified earlier in the day by the IFC advisor.  Students who may need additional assistance in processing this disappoint are encouraged to reach out to their residence hall staff or Student Involvement staff so we can help identify resources.

Student Involvement staff are able to assist any interested students with finding other ways to get connected and involved on campus.  Additionally, our Counseling Center, our Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life, and a student’s residential area Assistant Director are all great resources to help students process their experience.

How much does it cost to be in a fraternity?

Each organization sets their own due structure, including national and chapter dues. The first semester a student joins is usually the most expensive. Semester dues typically range from approximately $300 – $1000. Many chapters offer payment plans – we encourage all potential new members to discuss financial obligations with chapter leaders before accepting a bid for membership.

In addition to chapter financial obligations, there are two Elon fees that are charged so the University may maintain chapter houses and support the fraternity/sorority community on campus. The semester after a student joins, his tuition and fees bill will include a one-time $60 new member fee. In addition, if the chapter a student joins has an on campus chapter house in the Loy Center, each member of the fraternity is charged either a $145 Greek organization fee each semester (for those chapters with full houses), or $90 Greek organization fee each semester (for those chapters with duplex houses) regardless of whether he lives in the house. This is similar to a house fee that might be charged by the fraternity if the chapter owned and operated their own house.

Does a student have to join a sorority or fraternity to have a social life?

We hear students say this sometimes, but we do not believe that is true. Elon has over 250 student organizations, a vibrant Student Involvement office, a Center for Leadership with programs accessible to all students, and a nationally recognized service and civic engagement program that offer many opportunities for students to be involved on campus and create social networks. We know many students who have active social lives and are very engaged in campus life who are not members of fraternities or sororities.

Once a student joins a fraternity, how long is the “pledge” process?

We have a six week maximum “pledge” process, or new member program. All fraternities and sororities must initiate their new members at the end of that six week period. Some organizations have a shorter process, as determined by the inter/national organization.

I’ve heard fraternities and sororities haze. How does the University respond to allegations of hazing?

The University will investigate any reports of hazing. Hazing is a violation of the Elon University Honor Code and can be a violation of North Carolina state law. You can learn more at the University’s Hazing Prevention website. The University will hold accountable any student group or individuals who are found responsible for hazing.  Students can call the hazing hotline at and report information.  Parents and students are encouraged to report incidents they believe are hazing through the hazing hotline at 336-278-HAZE (4293), by submitting an online hazing report, or by calling Student Involvement at 336-278-7214. The more specific the information that is provided (organization, types of activities, location, date/time, etc.) the better the University is able to conduct an investigation.

What should students consider before joining a fraternity?

Students should explore why they want to join a fraternity or sorority and be honest about their own preferences and limitations. Fraternity or sorority membership does not mean that a student will automatically have better grades or be better time managers, and they should not join simply for social reasons. All of our organizations have responsibilities for membership, and students who have struggled with academics or with time management will need to be proactive in developing a plan to balance new commitments.

What is the best advice you would give a student going through recruitment?

First and foremost, students should be themselves. Second, go into the process with an open-mind and be willing to consider membership in several chapters. Students are often surprised to learn that chapter stereotypes are not always accurate, and they find great things about all of our organizations. Three, know your values and what you’re looking for in a group, that will help you find the best fit. Finally, meet and develop relationships with as many current fraternity members as you can.

What are the benefits of joining a fraternity?

All of our fraternities were founded as values-based organizations. They all share the goals and values of scholarship, philanthropy and service, betterment of an individual, and brotherhood. Fraternities can serve as a support system for students and provide opportunities for involvement. There are more than 250 leadership positions available to students through fraternity/sorority involvement in chapter officers and council executive roles, and the experience that students can gain through these organizations and leadership roles can complement the college experience and provide numerous networking opportunities.