I was lucky enough to spend Saturday night watching the Crimson Tide of Alabama score a “heart attack” win over LSU and I got to sit and chat with a group Alabama Alums….the subject…sorority recruitment and recommendations.

As you know Alabama is one of those schools that is a “must have” recommendations recruitment.  In case you need a reminder here is the list of schools where you must have recommendations.

Here is a list of schools where recommendations are a MUST:

All SEC schools: Alabama, Ole Miss, Kentucky, Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida,  Auburn, Miss State, Vanderbilt, Arkansas, Texas A&M, LSU, Misssouri

Big XII:  Texas, Oklahoma, Baylor, Texas Tech, Kansas, Oklahoma State, Texas Christian,

ACC: Florida State, Clemson, UVA

Pac 10: USC, Arizona

Big 10: Indiana

Also add Southern Methodist, and Southern Miss

Note:  Basically ANYTHING south of the Mason Dixon Line needs a rec!

The following schools are on the fence post but I would suggest you go ahead and get them.

Nebraska, Kansas State, Iowa, Iowa State,  NC State, Wake Forest, UNC, University of Washington, Cal, UCLA, Arizona  State, Northwestern, UCF, DePauw, Washington and Lee, Georgetown.

For girls who are going to go through recruitment at a school in their home state; who have had family members, church friends, high school friends, women who their mothers, grandmothers, aunts, cousins are in social groups with all join sororities; finding recommendations is not a difficult ask.  However for those girls who are traveling out-of-state finding recommendations can be a frustrating adventure.  Add to this the fact that it is preferable to have a recommendation form someone who knows you personally and/or someone who is an actual alum of that particular chapter on the campus where the PNM will attend.  The question then becomes how can an out-of-state PNM find these coveted recs.

Well…Saturday night we sat and talked about our experiences finding recommendations and here’s a few suggestions we came up with.

First of all make a list of all of the sororities on campus that you will need recs for. Use this list a the focal point of securing recs, a place to keep track of those sororities that are covered and those you still need recs for.

It was suggested that PNMs put together a mass mailing to all the female teachers at her school inquiring if they were in a sorority while attending college.  One of the ladies I was with had her daughter do this and the girl picked up 3 recommendations.  The bonus…the women knew this girl and the recs were personal in nature…a good thing :).

Another suggestion was to search out your local Panhellenic and inquire whether they will be having a Recruitment Workshop.  I know for a fact that our local Panhellenic does not offer this (although it is desperately needed) but many do.  These seem to prevalent in Texas, Florida, and the south.  Usually at these workshop women representing different sororities are available to answer questions about recruitment requirements for their particular sorority.  PNMs should bring copies of their resume along with pictures of them selves.  This is a great venue for finding recommendations.

Reach out to your colleges local alumni association.   Here in Kansas City we have a large Alabama Alumni Association.  When my daughter decided on Alabama and recruitment she reached out to the ladies of the association.  These wonderful women took her to lunch, talked to her about recruitment at Alabama and volunteered to write her recommendations.  Again because these ladies had personal knowledge of my daughter, the recommendations were personal in nature and a bonus because the women who wrote them were actual alumnae of the chapters on the Alabama campus.

One woman shared with us that her daughter also reached out the members of her church.  She said it was interesting because it was the older members (think women who were in college in the 1960’s) that were more receptive to writing recs.  They were excited to tell all about their experiences and a couple of ladies found out that they were actually members of the same sororities (different chapters).

If the college you are attending has a Preview event this is also a great place to network recs :).

I know it’s still early but never too early to start looking for those recs…hope these thoughtful suggestions help :).