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Not a ‘Greek’ year

Fraternity members run home after the pledge class receive their “bids.” Photo by Katelyn Edwards.

If you’re wondering why you saw so many groups of students sprinting down Fredonia Avenue in the last couple of weeks, your answer is Greek life recruitment.

For both men and women, it is a tradition for Greek life members to run home with their pledge class after they receive a “bid,” an offer, from their fraternity or sorority.

Though the numbers have remained stable for men who participate in fall rush, the numbers for women are slightly declining.

According to Kathleen Prout, the assistant director of fraternity & sorority life in the student activities office, this year, 257 women registered for panhellenic recruitment compared to 276 last year.

Prout said that as a result, the council is putting more focus targeting non-first year students.

“Nationally there has been a slow decline in number of registered men and women going through recruitment,” Prout said. “Sometimes students would prefer to get acclimated to college and get a semester or two under their belt before adding more responsibility.”

Sophomore health science major Jem Solomon had exactly this mindset when she waited a year before going through formal recruitment this fall.

“I think I gained a sense of independence and I know my identity outside of being in a sorority, solidifying my sense of self and uniqueness,” Solomon said. “I also got to know people outside of Greek life and maintained a pretty good relationship with them.”

While waiting a while to join can be beneficial, Prout encourages interested students not to wait too long.

“Fraternities and sororities create lifelong friendships and networking opportunities that lasts past their time at Bradley,” Prout said. “Going through Panhellenic or IFC recruitment allows you the opportunity to meet a lot of individuals in a short amount of time.”

There are also a lot of networking opportunities for freshmen that are not yet accustomed to the social climate.

“For those who are new to Bradley, this is a great way to make connections in a new place. Anyone who goes through IFC and Panhellenic recruitment have the flexibility of not having a commitment till they receive a bid,” Prout said.

To students who are not very inclined to join, Prout suggests that they at least try the experience out.

“Even if a student decides that joining a chapter is not for them, at least they got the experience of meeting and networking with students across campus,” Prout said.

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