Greek life recruitment hits the web

Go long! Sam Spyres looks down field to make a pass during a flag football game. The game was a part of Delta Chi's new two-week recruitment program..

Jaime Brown

Even solid institutions like the Greek system evolve over time. Whether those changes are subtle or university-altering depends on the school.

Washburn University’s sororities and fraternities have seen their share of shake-ups but have done little to revamp their images. This year the Greek system aims to offer students easier access to houses and also offers the promise of something new in the future.

Generally each sorority house bands together to get the word out to as many incoming pledges as possible. Washburn takes recruitment very seriously and strives to maintain a level of excellence during this process.

“Greek Recruitment is run awesome here at Washburn,” said Lucas Mullin, a member of the Washburn Student Government Association. “The Panhellenic Council is made up of different women from all the chapters on campus,”

This all-for-one attitude is fantastic at letting students know what sorority options are available to them.

A slight difference this year is the process by which sororities allow students to register. Students can now use a new recruitment from Interactive Collegiate Solutions. Students have the convenient option to go online and follow the simple instructions laid out on the welcome page.

“Having this made everything a lot easier,” said Chelsea Artzer, Delta Gamma recruitment officer, “and it takes away the time- consuming part of paperwork.”

Alpha Phi and Zeta Tau Alpha have also streamlined their recruitment process to ease concerns possible pledges have with the process.

“If requirement was this easy when I was a freshman I definitely would have put more thought in to pledging,” said Monique Polanco, a senior biology major.

Though registration has become simpler the process remains the same. The $35.00 registration fee still applies for those wanting to join, and each potential pledge will still spend a week getting to know each sorority house before deciding if the Greek tradition is right for them or where they will pledge.

The online process may be new for Washburn but it has been utilized on other campuses nationwide for years.

“Most universities have it now and ICS helps us to keep better track of who is interested and pledging as well as makes recruitment easier,” said Artzer.

Washburn fraternity houses are also making efforts to step up their game this year. This is particularly true of fraternity housing adjustments. The clear example here is Sigma Phi Epsilon’s continuing plan to move into the now defunct Washburn Kappa Alpha Theta house.

The Sigma Phi Epsilon move comes down to economics. The Kappa Alpha Theta house provided larger space and didn’t call for large improvements. Necessary funds still had to be raised to overhaul the old sorority house to make it ready for the fraternity move. Financially this proved to be a better investment than any upgrades to the old Sigma Phi Epsilon house.

Delta Chi isn’t moving any time soon but they are taking steps to ramp up the recruitment process. This fall the Delta Chi fraternity is performing a two week recruitment extravaganza to boost their membership numbers. This extra bit of time gives the fraternity room to pull in freshmen they previously wouldn’t have.

Unlike the sororities each fraternity takes an “every many for himself” stance when it comes to recruitment. Each individual house takes it upon itself to find as many pledges as they can. Although this is a singular effort the recruitment process is pretty standard.

“For us it really starts with cold calling freshman,” said Brady Rothrock of Phi Delta Theta, “and then once we get a chance to speak with them we try to get them to a recruiting event.”

On top of cold calling recruitment also includes signing up personal friends or tapping the alumni well for potential pledges. Every fraternity is stepping up efforts to improve their own recruitment process.

“Fraternity recruitment this year is slightly different than years past as we are having a full week devoted to recruitment, on top of each chapter doing their own recruiting,” said Mullin. “This goes back to focusing on the community as a whole, and getting men interested in Greek life in general, regardless their choice of chapter in the end.”

Washburn University encourages the Greek system to not only continue going strong but to involve every student on campus. Go Greek Night starts Aug. 31, lasting from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The Greek events last for a week and end on bid day at 5 p.m. More information is available online at http://www.washburn.edu/main/studentlife/greek-life/index.html or by contacting Student Activities & Greek Life at (785) 670-1723.