Ava Compagnoni (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Fall 2022 Rush Week has come and gone. In the midst of the first few weeks of school, Greek Organizations scrambled to put together a successful week of events, and sororities and fraternities across the board have deemed this Rush Week successful. It began Friday, September 9th, and ended a week later, Friday, September 16th. With over half a dozen events, organizations put their best foot forward to engage with as many sophomore, junior and senior potential new members as possible.
Student Engagement removed two historical and universal events from the weekly agenda. In the past, to kick off rush week, an Ice Cream Social — provided by Student Engagement — was always the first event of the week outside of Lower. This was shifted to a ‘Greek Fair’ – without ice cream – that occurred Wednesday, September 14th, significantly later in the Rush Week process. Most Greek organizations were upset about this shift in the rush week process.
The second major change to Rush Week was the removal of the Round Robin event. Historically, all potential new members would meet all of the Greek organizations on campus, whether you were interested in rushing them or not. This contributed to the overall Greek unity presence on campus. Organizations do not seem to have noticed a significant change in the success rate without this event. Senior Jake Nowacki, Rush Coordinator of Delta Pi Sigma, supports this claim. “I never had a Round Robin since I rushed during the 2020 Fall COVID year and last year it dropped off.”
Throughout Rush Week, Rush Coordinators must plan, organize, budget, and attend all events — a lot to endure. Conscious of these responsibilities when running for this position in the previous Spring semester, all Rush Coordinators showed confident composure at the Greek Fair. Senior Tau Sigma Gamma Rush Coordinator, Isabella Villegas, stated, “I feel like it is going great, we’ve got a really good group of interested girls. [But] I definitely think this event should have been earlier. A lot of potential new members who are trying to mix and mingle about where they want to go is difficult with only two events left after tonight.”
The majority of Greek organizations on campus are local organizations, as opposed to national organizations, but according to the Ursinus website, Tri Sigma is the single national sorority on campus. Local means that a Greek org is only on Ursinus’ campus; whereas, national means the Greek org is across colleges nationally and/or globally. Therefore, national organizations have certain rules that must be passed by the headquarters of their organization. Senior Rush Coordinator of Tri Sigma, Coco Carosella, elaborates on this process. “Since we are a national sorority we are held to national standards and what comes with that is that we had our plans finalized in February.” This saves Carosella from some summer stress. However, she and the other Rush Coordinator find the balance between school work and extracurriculars to be difficult during Rush Week.
There was a significant change to protocol this year. All students interested in rushing Greek life had to fill out an interest survey by Sunday, September 11th, by 11:59pm. Greek organizations expressed mixed feelings about this new change. “I think Sunday was a good happy medium, the school has to make sure people are eligible. I know other colleges have mandatory pre-rush sign-ups. This year it is a big adjustment, but in the coming years it will be more helpful,” says Villegas. However, having the deadline before the bulk of Rush Week with only the first three days of events over the weekend to decide on. Omega Chi’s Rush Coordinator, junior Ella McCarthy, feels this quick commitment could be too much for interested students. “I think that puts a lot of pressure on students to decide if they want to rush or not. It makes us question the need for this form and when has there ever been a form before?”
For the future of Greek life, there are potentially exciting new proposals to bring back an organization and welcome new ones to our college campus. “The school is trying to bring on two greek life organizations, Sig Rho and one of the Divine Nines. The Divine Nines are the first nine African-American Greek life organizations,” Villegas informs the Grizzly. Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. is a part of the Divine Nine, and hopefully a Divine Nine sorority may be joining our campus soon. The future of Ursinus Greek life is exciting, and hopefully the new changes will have positive effects in the coming years.