Greek Life: The Importance of Rush Week

July 17, 2012 Category: College Tips

Greek life plays a large role in many college students’ lives. The connections and friendships built by being a member of a fraternity or sorority can open doors to amazing opportunities that a person would never have otherwise been exposed to.

While being in a fraternity or sorority isn’t mandatory, having this affiliation is a great addition to any graduate’s resume and if you’ve always been interested in Greek life, rush week is one event you won’t want to miss out on.

What Is Rush Week?

As the name implies, rush week is an event that takes place over the course of one week. While the scheduling may vary from school to school, many fraternities and sororities hold rush week in the beginning of each spring and fall semester (winter rush weeks also exist on some campuses).

Greek LifeDuring this week, each fraternity and sorority house opens its doors to welcome any and all students that have an interest in possibly pledging to join.

It’s typically a very well promoted social event that serves the purpose of introducing students to what each fraternity and sorority has to offer.

In order to participate, you’ll have to sign up. Once you’ve done that, you’ll receive a formal invitation to attend the rush week event(s).

How to Handle Rush Week

Picking which fraternity or sorority to choose isn’t always easy. Even if you already have your heart set on a number one pick, it is best to still visit all the other houses. Hearing about how prestigious and amazing a particular frat or sorority is is one thing but you may feel differently once you’re actually there.

It is important that you have a checklist beforehand of criteria that your ideal Greek house has to meet:

– Does the house provide a positive atmosphere?

– Do the brothers/sisters all seem genuinely friendly and welcoming or are there a couple of bad apples?

– When interacting with the members, do you feel completely comfortable around them?

– Do they participate in activities that you’re interested in and can benefit from?

– Do they have strong networking connections and/or well known/respected alumni?

Rush week should be handled almost like car shopping. Think of rush week as your test drive, where you’re able to really get a feel for things to help determine whether or not it would be a good fit for you.

What Happens Next?

After you’ve looked at all the choices, you’ll be required to submit your “bids” of which houses you want to join. It is recommended to pick a top two in order to show that you aren’t just trying to get into any fraternity or sorority. Your bids will be reviewed by the rush board, which will be the ones to let you know which, if any, of the houses want you as a pledge.

Once your bid has been accepted, the final step is to talk with the fraternity or sorority and find out what the pledge process is like and what you’ll need to do in order to be an official member.

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