Wednesday, July 22, 2009
(Undergrad) I want to join XYZ Sorority/Fraternity...What steps do I need to take???
This blog will focus on undergraduate students. I promise I will post another blog about Grad membership as well.
So you've done your research, you realized that XYZ org is the PERFECT org for you. So now what? Do I tell all of its members? Do I tell all of my friends?
After realizing which organization you want to join, you have a lot of work ahead of you. Do you know the National and chapter history? Do you know the principles of the org? If a member was to ask you "Why do you want to be a member of my organization, do you know what your answer will be? These are things you need to think about and prepare.
1. Attend ALL if not most of the organization events. By doing this task, TRUST ME the members will know that you are interested.
2. Join other organizations on campus. Black Student Association, Student Government, etc...to get noticed! There is a big chance that the members of the organization of your choice are ALSO members, so this is another way to connect with them. Try to land leadership roles with these organizations as well.
3. Discreet!, Discreet! DISCREET!!!! I can't stress this enough! If you are close friends with a member or two, then it's okay to let them know your interests, but, for the most part, do NOT let anyone else know. That includes "pillow talking w/your boo" talking to your BFFs, and GOD FORBID members from another organization. Even if your friends confide in you and tell you, their interests do NOT mean that you tell them well your interests lie.
4.Community Service- Most organization require that you perform community service. Now some may require more hrs than others, but in a nutshell, you want to stand out! I say that to say this, Don't start community service RIGHT BEFORE RUSH!
5. Grades - Grades are crucial when we are choosing members to join our org. We don't want people that just met the bare minimal GPA requirement, but we want prospective members that are on their A game! For example when I pledge DST all of my line sisters had GPAs well ABOVE 3.0. My GPA was a 3.8!
6. How do I know about their events? Research and see if they have a chapter website, a Facebook account that you can join or become a fan of. (And by that I mean some organization including my initiating chapter have a "Friends of XYZ Chapter") Also, keep your eyes and ears open for flyer's, posters, etc. for events that they may have on or around campus.
7. One of the worst things you can ask a member is "When are you all having a line?" If she/he thinks you're worthy, she/he will VOLUNTEER this information to you, without you asking.
8. Don't become a Fraternity groupie! WE HATE THAT!!!!!!! You have no idea who many emails I have received in the past asking me "I want to be a part of Delta, will become a Q-Sweet, or Q-essence, or Q-doll, etc.. help me? The answer is NO! In some cases, it can HURT you from becoming a member. Let your grades, knowledge, community service, and leadership skills shine! Also so we can make matters clear, Zeta Phi Beta, and Phi Beta Sigma are the ONLY sister and brother organization.
9. Don't HOUND us! We have lives outside of our organization. A question or two is fine, but calling us all the time, emailing us all the time, or following us to class is a turn-off!
10. YOU CANNOT PLEDGE AT A SCHOOL WHERE YOU DO NOT ATTEND CLASSES! You cannot pledge at a school with an active chapter unless you are enrolled there as a degree-seeking student. Isn't that obvious? For example, there is no such thing in Delta as "cross-pledging".
11. Just because you live in a city with a City-wide chapter does not mean you can pledge that chapter. Your school must be included in the city-wide chapter's charter for you to qualify to pledge that chapter. City-wide chapters are not for every woman attending a school in that city. If you don't attend one of those schools, you do not qualify to pledge the City-wide chapter.
12. Several undergrads have asked what they can do if the XYZ chapter at their school is suspended. The answer is simple, nothing, short of transferring to a school where the chapter is active. If the chapter is not active by the time you graduate, set your sights on an alumnae chapter after you get your degree. Also, don't expect a chapter that has been suspended to have intake right after their suspension is over. If the suspension period is over, but a fine unpaid remains, there can be no chapter activities until the fine is paid.
13. A newly-initiated Delta wrote, "I can't stand it when those who did not make the line complain to me and say they are upset because they didn't make it and they know they had better qualifications than some of my line sisters. Keep your comments to yourself because those who did make it had nothing to do with you not making the line, especially if you think you may want to submit another application for membership!" AMEN!!! If at first you don't succeed, Try, try again!
14. Joining XYZ org can be VERY expensive, so are you willing to make a FINANCIAL commitment? It's not enough to pay to pledge - Delta business, for example, takes ONGOING financial support. Too many people have been willing to spend a small fortune to get in and then complain about dues once they are members. It is VERY VERY VERY (did I say VERY?) expensive to maintain membership in these organizations. If you aren't willing and able to budget for it as you do all of your essentials, you don't need to pursue membership.
15. Can I take out a student loan to join XYZ? I have received this question so many times that I thought I should address it. How you pay for membership is your business, but I am strongly against it! As I stated before initiation dues, membership dues, etc. can be pricey!
For the most part, I tried gearing this blog towards all sororities and Fraternities. On the last note, I will end by saying this about MY sorority for those of you that are interested in DST. Delta is not just a lifetime commitment. Delta is a LIFESTYLE! We do not need people who only wear t-shirts or step. If you cannot make Delta and its programmatic thrusts a prominent part of your life FOR THE REMAINDER OF YOUR LIFE, please find another sorority.
I hope this was helpful!