It’s snowing at my house AGAIN!!!!! As I look out the window it’s hard to imagine but in a little over 5 months Formal Recruitment will begin to take place on campuses across the United States.  For those of you participating on campuses that have competitive recruitments you most likely are in full rec mode.  Finding recs is in some cases like a treasure hunt, you look and look  and ask and ask and voila….you find one, sometimes in a place where you least expect it (like waiting in line for a dressing room at J Crew!).

I thought I’d share a few little tid bits of advice today :).  Those of you who have been fans for a while now have already read these but while talk to a mom yesterday it came to my attention that you all have probably not gone back and read every single post ( I know a few of you have) and so I thought it might be a great idea to re-cap a few recruitment suggestions.

Sorority recruitment can/will a roller coaster of emotions.  There’s move-in for instance. Depending on your particular campus you might move into a dorm just for recruitment, go home for a week and then come back and move into your real dorm room.  In some cases you move-in early and have to register with the university to do this.  Other campuses will just simply have you choose a move-in time and you move into your dorm room.  Any way it goes move-in is stressful.  For us, when our youngest went through recruitment, move-in was particularly stressful because she missed signing up for a move in time by 3 hours and so the time we got was the morning of Convocation Day!  Knowing my daughter I knew that there was NO WAY she could get all moved in, situated and be calm and ready for convocation.  It took a little white lie and some maneuvering but we managed to move her move-in time to the first spot on the first day.  Wow ….was I glad we did.

The little tid bit about move-in I wanted to share is this.  I know that many of you are already shopping for recruitment outfits.  Of course you are not expected to buy days and days worth of new clothes (okay we did but my daughter’s wardrobe needed serious tweaking ).  My suggestion is BEFORE you leave for recruitment take a day and try on each outfit of clothes.  If I were you I would have several options for each day.  If you are like my daughter she often times will change her mind about what she wants to wear…options are important.  There are always the unavoidable accidents, spills and yes the untimely arrival of Auntie Flow.  Be prepared!

So try on each outfit complete with shoes and jewelry.  Do you hair like you might want to wear it on that day.  Then take a picture of yourself.  Take each outfit, put it in a hanging bag.  Also put in the bag the shoes you are going to wear and the accessories you will be using (jewelry, hair bands ect). Label the bag with the party day and put the picture of yourself in the bag as well.

I know this sounds a little OCD but let me explain. Did I mention that recruitment and move-in are stressful?  By the time you move in, get your room somewhat situated and then jump into recruitment things can get a little chaotic.  If you have everything you need in one place, organized and labeled, getting ready each day becomes a much simpler task and definitely less stressful.  I don’t want you to think that you are tied to the options you brought and how you look in the pictures but I am here to say that it sure helps to be able to go into that bag and everything is right there.  There isn’t the massive search for the second earring or a missing shoes.  Plus it’s all self-contained so during move-in nothing gets lost or misplaced.    You will thank yourself for doing this little bit of prep work ..I promise!

Next little bit of advice.  This is for all you PNMs out there.  Ladies…once you receive a bid your life is going to get REALLY busy (especially if you are at a large University with a competitive recruitment and a vibrant Greek Life).  Invest in a day planer, a large wall calendar and some markers.  Mount the calendar in your dorm room where you can see it daily.  Start from day 1 of recruitment to get into the habit of writing down EVERYTHING you have/need to do.  You can color code the different events, classes, meetings ect so at a glance you can see what you have to do today, tomorrow and next week.  Do the same in your planner.  Get into a practice of taking your planner to pledge meetings and chapter.  Write down what events, panhellenic speakers, intramural activities , just to name a few, that you have happening.  Transfer it to you calendar when you get back to your room.

Why am I telling you this?  Well…once you receive a bid you will be VERY busy.  Chances are you will have one night a week that is set aside for pledge meetings.  These are a time when you will learn all about the sisterhood you are now a part of.  You will most likely have tests about the information you learn.  I can still recite the Greek alphabet while holding a burning match and not get burnt! Some college campuses will have required speakers that are hosted through Panhellenic.  These different speakers may address common concerns and issues related to being a college student.  In the past they have spoken on body image, alcohol and drugs, personal safety just to name a few. You will also have a weekly chapter meeting to attend. All of the above mentioned events are mandatory unless you have a class. Just because you have a test is not an excuse not to attend.  All of the members have tests and projects as well.  Usually once a week (on smaller campuses it may be twice a month) you will also have a swap with a fraternity.  These events are fun social gatherings, usually themed and can fall on a week night.  On some campuses these don’t start until after 9 pm. If you go to school that has a big football following then there will be tailgating and game day events.  you may even have the opportunity to go to away games and stay at your sorority affiliation on that campus. Finally there are those mandatory study hall hours and required philanthropy events..oh and sisterhoods.

If you get all of this on your big calendar as well as your classes homework, projects and test then you are able to plan out your study time.  Remember sororities want their members to get good grades.  If your GPA drops below the chapters acceptable level you may be called up before standards, have social privileges taken away, extra study hall hours added and in some cases even fined. Being organized is important and it’s best to get off on the right foot right from the beginning.

So just a couple of tid bits of advice. I hope you take them into consideration.