Picture this: it's mid-January, and I am so excited to begin the spring formal recruitment process at my school since I had missed out on the experience last year. Fast forward about two grueling and emotionally exhausting weeks later, and I was left with one house, a house I had known from the beginning was not my home, for the last round. I knew I wouldn't accept a bid from that respective sorority, and I ended up dropping out from the process.
I was hurt and disappointed that the process had not worked out how I had wanted to. I did not understand why so many of my friends had such a successful experience with formal recruitment, and I didn't. I was not alone in my disappointment that morning of preference round as I watched girls crying on the phone and ultimately dropping from the process as well.
I remember them warning us after every round of cuts to be open-minded and to take into account if you wanted to just be a member of a sorority or if you wanted to be a "Panhellenic woman." I found that line complete bullshit because I was not willing to settle for a sorority where I knew I would be unhappy, and I definitely did not trust the process at that point.
Fed up, I talked to my rho-gam and asked about my options. She told me that I could either do continuous open bidding, go through recruitment with a sorority who was reestablishing on campus or wait until next fall and do informal recruitment.
None of them seemed like ideal options because the Panhellenic council had definitely left a bad taste in my mouth. I ultimately decided to give Greek life another shot and decided to rush the reestablishing chapter on campus. I again was left disappointed and hurt, as I didn't receive a bid.
I was ready to give up completely on Greek life until I got an email that the house that I had originally really liked was participating in continuous open bidding. I was very conflicted because of the fact that I did really like that sorority, but I also was definitely having a difficult time putting my pride aside after being rejected by them. I was afraid of putting myself out there to be judged and ultimately rejected like my past experiences. I ultimately decided to give it another shot and went to their cupcake decorating event they had one night during the week. I ultimately realized why I really liked the sorority in the first place, and thankfully, I finally did receive my bid.
A part of me does wish that I got to experience the excitement of bid day, but I definitely think that informal recruitment was more suited for me. Ultimately getting a bid made me question the whole process of formal recruitment. I wondered how I could have possibly slipped through the cracks if I was meant to be in my current sorority. It also made me sad to think of the number of girls who don't get a second chance like me.
If formal recruitment taught me anything, it would be the definition of perseverance. I also definitely learned not to take criticism too personally. I am excited where my journey takes me from here and the impact that I can hopefully have in formal recruitment next year to minimize those who slip through the cracks.