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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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A look into Greek rush week

UW-Madison is home to 25 different Greek life houses and is made up of over 4,000 members. These Greek organizations pride themselves on their brotherhood, sisterhood, philanthropy and their ability to allow students to lead. 

While Greek life presents a world of opportunity, there is a process that potential new members must go through in order to become a member of a certain chapter. This process is called “rush,” and the goal is for potential new members — also known as PNM’s — to find the best chapter for them. Likewise, chapters are able to find PNM’s that would suit them the best. It’s almost like a matchmaking process, but there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes work that allows rush to run smoothly.

For the majority of the summer — and the entirety of welcome week — members on the executive boards of all Greek life houses prepare for rush. Each comes up with a game plan to ensure the success of their chapter’s rush. Current members of sororities are expected to be on campus a week before school starts in order to participate in “work week.” This week-long event is dedicated to preparation for the upcoming rush events, but it is also a week to bond with other members in the chapter and have fun. 

Emma Sueiro is the vice president of recruitment for the Kappa Alpha Theta chapter. Emma’s role is to organize her chapter’s rush and to teach other members what to do. “After this unconventional year, being the VP of recruitment has given me the opportunity to rekindle and spark new relationships,” Sueiro said. “It has been an extremely busy but fulfilling job.” 

Like sorority rush, fraternity rush aims to bring together a group of individuals with common interests and goals. However, the process of fraternity rush is a little different and less structured than sorority rush. The PNM’s socialize with different fraternities until they eventually receive a bid. If they receive more than one bid, they then decide which fraternity they would like to join. 

The process is based on building a strong connection. In the end, both the chapters and potential new members are looking to find a good fit. Louis Schaller, one of the rush chairs for the Chi Psi fraternity stated, “I was really honored to be elected by my fellow brothers to be on the rush committee. I’m really excited to have a significant role in finding new members that will be a good fit for our Lodge brotherhood.”

If you decide to rush, the best advice I can give is to always be yourself and to try to avoid entering the rush processes with any expectations. You may think one chapter is right for you during the first round and think completely differently by the last round. 

Greek life is a great way to get involved on campus and make new friends. UW-Madison provides great opportunities to put yourself out there and push yourself out of your comfort zone, and Greek life is a great way to do that! 

Kelsey Barrett is a member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority at UW-Madison.

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