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Schools with "harsh" fraternity and/or sorority systems or those with disagreeable practices

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Replies to: Schools with "harsh" fraternity and/or sorority systems or those with disagreeable practices

  • deega123deega123 643 replies46 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 689 Member
    edited April 2016
    @Marian, at other schools some girls just don't get to live in the house. Most of the time it is based on grades. The members with the highest grades get to pick their rooms first. The ones that don't get a bed have to find off campus housing or live in the dorms.

    edited to add - At least with the schools that I am familiar with, only sophomores live in the house. It's not like Animal House where every member lives in the fraternity house.
    edited April 2016
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  • EllieMomEllieMom 1872 replies11 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,883 Senior Member
    @Marian That was a misconception I had, too. I assumed that most houses were just that—houses where the people in the sororities or fraternities lived. At many schools that's not the case. At D's school, the "sorority house" is a floor in one of the dorms, and most girls don't live there.
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  • surfcitysurfcity 2478 replies59 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,537 Senior Member
    I love the idea of the T shirts for every rushee. I'd support that all the way up through pref night!
    This sounds good. I have a friend however, who told me that at her daughter's school, the T shirts given out were all size small or x small, so it was more apparent who was thinner and who was heavier. :( It was a calculated thing by the sororities.
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  • STEM2017STEM2017 4027 replies94 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 4,121 Senior Member
    @surfcity Wow. Just wow.
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8572 replies315 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,887 Senior Member
    deega123 wrote:
    I live in the South and know dozens of girls who have been through SEC recruitment. So, those are my "credentials" for being able to have an opinion in this thread.

    I don't think posters need resumes, but examples would be helpful. Maybe people who have been in the system, or know someone who has, could explain what the recruitment process is like at the houses they know about for those who haven't experienced it. Which houses have you had experience with and what do they do that's "physically and mentally grueling"?

    I only know of two houses. One of my sisters was in Sigma Chi in FL in the 70's. She loved it. I didn't care for the set up because they had a fraternity matched up with each sorority and the frat members were referred to as "big brothers" while the sorority members were called "little sisters." I thought that was pretty sexist. If they wanted to encourage a familial relationship, why not just use "brother" and "sister"? Why put the women in a subordinate role? It seemed like the fraternity existed to be doers and the sorority existed to be helpers. My sister's descriptions of their activities sounded like the men were training to be executives and the women were training to be their supportive secretaries or wives.

    The only fraternity I know of is the one in the Northeast that my husband pledged at, also in the 70's. He and a couple friends were engineering majors and the frat (whose chapter name I don't know) purposely kept them up all night the evening before a major exam. The boys all failed so badly that they were dropped from the major.

    I don't believe that the behavior of one chapter should reflect badly on other chapters or that sororities or fraternities are inherently bad. There has to be some measure of personal responsibility. My sister didn't have to settle for being what I consider a second class citizen. My husband could have walked out anytime he wanted. The boy in the thread ucbalumnus posted a link to could have accepted that knowing not all students would get a bid meant that he might be one of them. I think the way the frat handled it was horrible; they should have let the boys they weren't giving bids to out early so they could make the rounds at other parties. But no fair trying to join an exclusive club then crying foul that they're exclusive. We need to do a better job of teaching our young people to stick up for themselves. I was reserved and shy as a teen, so I get it, but mindlessly engaging in an activity that's not in your best interest because somebody else told you to is reminiscent of the grade school ploy, "If you do x, I'll be your friend." If young people are still falling for it when they get to college, we're doing something wrong.
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8572 replies315 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,887 Senior Member
    Re: post 27

    Students aren't required to visit every house, are they? What's to stop them from just doing just events 1, 3, 5, 8, and 10, or whatever other combination they want?
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  • PragmaticMomPragmaticMom 360 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 366 Member
    If you do not know anyone who is already in a sorority, how do you find out when rush is and how long it lasts? How do you know which sororities require recommendations or whether special wardrobing is needed for certain events? Do you have to pay a fee to rush -- where do you find that out?

    Also, anyone have insight on the ethnic sororities? Do they rush the same time as the traditional sororities or do they have their own schedules?
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  • HannaHanna 14863 replies42 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 14,905 Senior Member
    edited April 2016
    CAMidwestMom, your son should investigate whether summer rush is common at his school. Many SEC fraternities will have events in various cities to get to know the freshmen. Houses that do this will already know who they want before the formal rush period.

    Austinmshauri, women must go to every event they are invited to at every house or they will be removed from the process. They have to give everyone a chance and vice versa. It is beyond grueling -- and remember that this involves walking all over campus all day in beautiful hair/clothes in 98 degree heat in places like Baton Rouge, Tallahassee, and Tuscaloosa in August.

    Indiana is the only school left in the country with a bed quota, and even it is changing a little bit (there are a few unhoused sororities). Everyone else uses a quota system. Some of the SEC schools like Ole Miss and Alabama have excellent placement rates, over 90% of women who start the process join. They do a pretty good job letting students know how to prepare over the summer.
    edited April 2016
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  • deega123deega123 643 replies46 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 689 Member
    @PragmaticMom, you can easily Google the information. Most schools will have official recruitment webpages and guides.
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 76577 replies666 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 77,243 Senior Member
    Also, anyone have insight on the ethnic sororities?

    Isn't the high level of racial (self-)segregation within some campuses' systems itself an undesirable characteristic?
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  • PragmaticMomPragmaticMom 360 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 366 Member
    @ucbalumnus: If significant social capital is tied to greek membership on that particular campus, I'd want my daughter to explore all the options, including ethnic sororities if they exist.

    I'm going out on a limb here, but my inter-racial child may 'find' better fit with an Asian sorority perhaps. Or, maybe the ethnic sororities are more eager to add members and therefore easier to get into?
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  • PragmaticMomPragmaticMom 360 replies6 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 366 Member
    @deega123 -- where do you start if you don't know what the names of the sororities are?
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  • CAMidwestMomCAMidwestMom 872 replies8 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 880 Member
    @Hanna The summer rush is in late July and by the fact that it fills to capacity every year, I would say it's pretty popular. I know he has texted his friend in the one house and has texted with the President and been invited up for a visit. There is informal rush, but I don't know anything about it. I know Greek is big at his school, but I myself have no experience with it and my older D's experience was, during week of welcome she texted me that she decided to rush because you get a free t shirt. She really liked one group right off the bat and got into that sorority, no recs no hair dressing etc.

    Anyway, I don't want to get over involved, but I also want to know what he's in for.
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  • deega123deega123 643 replies46 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 689 Member
    @PragmaticMom Just Google the name of the school + fraternity recruitment or sorority recruitment. The recruitment process is run by Greek oversight organizations, not the individual sororities or fraternities. IFC is for frats, Panhellenic is for sororities. All the info for a particular school should be on the IFC or the Panhellenic web pages.
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 76577 replies666 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 77,243 Senior Member
    edited April 2016
    If significant social capital is tied to greek membership on that particular campus, I'd want my daughter to explore all the options, including ethnic sororities if they exist.

    What I am suggesting is that, for someone interested in joining, a campus where it is common for fraternities and sororities to have members of different race/ethnicity from their historical race/ethnicity (e.g. non-white people in historically white chapters, non-black people in historically black chapters, non-Asian people in historically Asian chapters, non-Latino people in historically Latino chapters, etc.) may be more desirable than one where it is unusual for that to happen.
    edited April 2016
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  • ZinheadZinhead 2473 replies137 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,610 Senior Member
    @austinmshauri -
    I only know of two houses. One of my sisters was in Sigma Chi in FL in the 70's. She loved it. I didn't care for the set up because they had a fraternity matched up with each sorority and the frat members were referred to as "big brothers" while the sorority members were called "little sisters." I thought that was pretty sexist. If they wanted to encourage a familial relationship, why not just use "brother" and "sister"? Why put the women in a subordinate role? It seemed like the fraternity existed to be doers and the sorority existed to be helpers. My sister's descriptions of their activities sounded like the men were training to be executives and the women were training to be their supportive secretaries or wives.

    You must have mis-interpreted something from your sister. First of all, Sigma Chi is a fraternity, and your sister could not have been a member. She was probably a member of a "little sisters" association which is a group of women associated with the fraternity. These organizations faded away some time ago as described in the following article:

    http://www.nytimes.com/1989/09/17/style/campus-life-california-fraternities-phase-out-little-sister-groups.html

    At our fraternity, the little sisters group was about a quarter the size of the fraternity, and was made up of a mixture of unaffiliated women who choose not to join a sorority, the girlfriends of brothers, or siblings of brothers. Since men were not generally allowed in sororities, these groups started because the only place sorority women could only hang out with their fraternity boyfriends was at the fraternity house.

    "Little sister" groups allowed the women a formal place within the fraternity organization. There was a rush involved, and specific events were held for them, but they couldn't live in the house or be full members. Their role was not subservient, but more auxiliary in nature. In fact, at our house, in addition to picking a "big brother", a new pledge was supposed to pick a "big sister" to help guide him through the college years.
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