How to be the Perfect PNM During Sorority Recruitment

Hey y'all!

I have received so much positive feedback from "My Recruitment Experience" at the University of Alabama. If you're coming here to read this, you're either about to go through recruitment, or you're just curious about greek life in general! Either way, I hope this post can help answer your questions and calm your nerves.

Since I've only got through recruitment at UA, these tips are directed towards bama girls! Although I'm sure most recruitments are similar. If you have any questions, feel free to comment below and I'll try to help you the best I can!

First, let's start with a vocab lesson :
- PNM = Potential New Member aka you, the girl that is trying to find her new house!
- Active = the girl that is already in the sorority
- IWT = Ice, Water, Tea. This is the first day of recruitment

It also really helps to know all the nicknames for the different houses that are on campus. You'll regret when you end up walking to the Kappa Kappa Gamma house when you actually are supposed to be at the Kappa Alpha Theta house. 

Here's a list of the active Panhellenic Sororities at the University of Alabama :
Alpha Chi Omega *  = Alpha Chi / AXΩ
Alpha Delta Pi = ADPi /ΑΔΠ
Alpha Gamma Delta = Alpha Gam / ΑΓΔ
Alpha Omicron Pi = AOPi / ΑΟΠ
Alpha Phi ** = ΑΦ
Chi Omega = Chi O / ΧΩ
Delta Delta Delta = Tri Delt / ΔΔΔ
Delta Gamma = DG / ΔΓ
Delta Zeta = DZ / ΔZ
Gamma Phi Beta = Gamma Phi / ΓΦΒ
Kappa Alpha Theta = Theta / ΚΑΘ
Kappa Kappa Gamma = Kappa / ΚΚΓ
Kappa Delta = KD / ΚΔ
Pi Beta Phi = Pi Phi / ΠΒΦ
Phi Mu = ΦM
Zeta Tau Alpha = Zeta / ZTA

(we also are adding Sigma Kappa in 2018!!)

Pronunciation tips :
* Chi sounds like hi but with a C aka it's not pronounced "chee"
** All other sororities with the word Phi is pronounced like hi but with an F. But Alpha Phi is pronounced "fee"

Did you get all that? Now onto the Do's and Don'ts!

Don't hug the active when she picks you up at the door.
This is honestly something I've seen happen way too many times to count. When you go through each house, a girl will pick you up at the door. She'll put her hand behind your back but won't touch you (you're sweaty, we get that, we don't want to touch you just as much as you don't to be touched). This is not an invitation for a side hug. You'll feel mortified once you realize she's just trying to help guide you through the house.

Don't shake anyone's hand, unless they clearly initiate it.
I honestly doubt anyone will try to shake your hand anyway, but please don't do it! If a new active comes up to speak to you, just introduce yourself like a normal person, sans the handshake. It's so awkward and uncomfortable for both you and the active. Recruitment is supposed to be fun, it's not a job interview so don't treat it like one!

Don't ask about philanthropy on the first day.
I totally get that this might be something SO important to you, and that's completely understandable. It's important to understand what each house is involved in so that you can find a place that fits what you're passionate about. But there's a philanthropy day for a reason! You'll find out so much more information then. IWT (ice, water, tea) Day is all about getting to know you. I promise that you will have all the time you need to find out about what each sorority is doing to better the community at a later date.

Don't talk about the 6 B's.
Boys, booze, bible, bank, bed, and Barack. Your active doesn't want to hear about how crazy your prom night was, how much money your family makes, if you voted for Trump or not, what your personal beliefs are, or if your freshman year bucket list includes shacking with one boy in every fraternity. These topics are not appropriate recruitment conversations. Unless you want to talk about how you went on an awesome mission trip with your church, or that your work as a youth group leader changed your life. Just be smart, duh.

Don't list off your accomplishments.
Unless you're asked, of course! But don't feel the need to tell your active every single thing you've ever been a part of since kindergarten. Your conversations should flow naturally, so just stick to the things that make you unique and can expand on in greater detail. When you're passionate about a certain hobby or activity you participated in, it really shows to the active.

Don't bad mouth other houses.
I don't care if a girl spilled her drink all over you, please please don't talk negatively about other houses on the row. I know it can be hard to bite your lip when every other girl is talking mad smack, but just because you had a bad experience somewhere, doesn't mean everyone else did. For some girls, that might be their dream house, and you talking badly about it might make them rethink their decision, even though that's where they felt at home. It makes girls feel embarrassed and second-guess their choices. You could cause a girl to miss out on her perfect house because you were too busy talking about your own experience. 

Don't let the stereotypes affect your decision.
This kind of falls in the suggestion above. Just because one girl had a horrible experience at one house, or even if you had a bad conversation at the same house before, go in with a positive attitude. Act like this is the first time you've ever heard of "xyz" sorority, and you have no idea what to expect. Being in a sisterhood lasts a lifetime, and it's YOUR life, not Emily -- the random girl you befriended in your rho-chi group. You don't want to be stuck in a house that you have nothing in common with the girls, just because she told you the house you liked better sucked/had a bad reputation. 


  1. I loved reading this post! I served on my chapters recruitment board and as chapter president. These are great tips for PNM's