Let's talk about rush week. Not the rush week's in the bible belt at huge schools like Alabama where hundreds of girls are rushing for 10 different houses of both national and local sororities and fraternities. I mean let's talk about the rush week at the small schools. The one where you know pretty much everyone rushing and know at least a few girls in the small selection of houses. Let's talk about the small school rush week.
The experience of rushing at a small liberal art school is completely different than that of a school like Alabama. And as you try to prepare yourself for what is to come from what will probably be one of the longest weeks of your life you will realize that the youtube videos and articles you look up will not apply to you.
As you walk into the first day of recruitment you will look around the room at maybe 100 other girls. There are a couple options for houses and for the most part people will know what houses they want because at a small school you get to know each other fairly quickly. In any kind of rushing you will always hear stereotypes about the different houses and the girls that are in those houses and at larger schools it all just seems like folk lore or really strange rumors. At a smaller school you will already know girls in the houses going on. Whether its clubs, classes, or sports it is inevitable at a small school.
This makes the house tours easier. You can usually find someone within your group or in the houses themselves that you feel comfortable around and that you can talk to. It is still and all day escapade with lots of girl-flirting, hand shaking, and "nice to meet yous" but all the familiar faces make the whole experience a lot more comfortable.
Rushing at a smaller school, for this reason, feels a lot more personal. When you know a lot of girls in the house or friendly with them or some of them are even your best friends, when things don't turn out how you think it would, or that house doesn't appear on your card for the second round of rush it can seem very personal. When there are hundreds and hundreds of girls and lots of houses to choose from it can be easy to be lost in the masses but when you know the girls and see them all everyday it all feels personal.
The process, while still very regulated will feel more relaxed. Going to only a handful of houses throughout the week the same girls will be there every time and you will find yourself talking to the same girls. Even if it isn't the house you end up in, you will find yourself feeling relaxed around a lot of the girls in the houses you get invited back to.
Sometimes things can get a little messed up. People only put one house on their card or turn down bids or drop out all together. The numbers change and the lists change and it can get confusing. It can be hard. You could be sitting in a philanthropy meeting thinking about all the work and meeting you still have to go to. You will be exhausted. You will be stressed. And other people won't understand when you tell them you are exhausted and stressed.
And when you finally get the call on bid day it will all be worth it because you have found your place and your sisters.