“It was pretty uneventful, which is exactly what we like.”
This was how Meg Pevarski, assistant director of Greek life, described recruitment week for the Greek organizations at University of Richmond.
Recruitment week – often referred to as rush week for fraternities – is a period when prospective members become acquainted with members of the different organizations of Greek life. By the end of the week, students know which, if any, organization they will join.
Katy Norfleet, who ended her term as president of Panhellenic Council at the end of recruitment week, commented on the fluidity of this year’s process. “I think it was just a really smooth process,” she said. “Overall, I think everyone’s really happy.”
There were no significant issues throughout the week, which can be partly attributed to a change that the Panhellenic and Interfraternity councils made in the fall.
To ease this process, both the Panhellenic and Interfraternity councils increased educational and exposure opportunities for students interested in Greek life during the fall, Pevarski said. These events such as barbecues, educational sessions and other daytime events gave students more chances to learn about the organizations before the emotionally high week of recruitment.
Peter McNitt, vice president of outreach for Interfraternity Council, emphasized the importance of exposure during the fall semester for prospective Greek-life members. “We like to see the rush process as the entire first semester going into rush week,” he said. “We encourage guys to go to events that each fraternity hosts, and then after that you have an idea of a couple fraternities that you’re interested in.”
The number of participants in recruitment increased from last year, Pevarski and McNitt both said. However, the number of students accepted into Greek organizations decreased slightly this year. Pevarski said one of the contributing factors was the smaller size of the first-year class as a whole than it had been the past few years.
Another reason for smaller new member classes was a change in the academic qualifications required to join Greek organizations. Although each organization sets its own GPA requirement, the school sets a baseline requirement as well, which increased for both men and women since last year, Pevarski said.
The minimum GPA to join a Panhellenic chapter increased from 2.6 to 2.7, and the minimum GPA to join an Interfraternity chapter increased from 2.4 to 2.5, Pevarski said.
Pevarski said the reason for the increase was to better match that chapters’ requirements. For instance, each fraternity chapter required a GPA of at least 2.5 last year, but the school’s requirement was 2.4. Thus, students could have sought recruitment with a 2.4 but would not have been accepted without at least a 2.5.
The National Pan-Hellenic Council, which is the third council at Richmond that contains historically African-American organizations, will not recruit for another couple of weeks, Pevarski said. The NPHC uses a different process than the other two councils, which she referred to as an intake process. This process is more individualized than the other two councils, and each organization does its own recruitment, she said.
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