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Your guide to rushing a sorority

For all those looking to rush a sorority at Clemson, this survival guide is a necessity to keep stress levels low come fall in Tigertown. Recruitment registration is open from June 25 through Aug. 1, and the first day of rush is Aug. 16. The Clemson Panhellenic website will be your best friend during the process, and following their Instagram is also a great idea. Now, let’s dissect the different parts of rush!

Registration and recommendation letters
When registering for recruitment, visit the Clemson Panhellenic website and find the tab labeled “Recruitment.” Under here, there are several subtabs such as frequently asked questions, guidelines for parents and more. There will be information here about how to register. Clemson Panhellenic will later email and give information on the specifics once registration begins.

Recommendation letters tend to overwhelm some, but they are nothing to stress over. According to the Clemson Panhellenic website, “Each sorority has their own policies regarding recommendations/references; however, currently none of our chapters require recommendation letters. Clemson Panhellenic does not have access to any sorority’s recommendations.”

So, recommendation letters are not required; however, the website also lists contact emails for past alumna should you choose to reach out for one. The best way to keep track of which you have is to write down all of the sororities on a piece of paper and simply check off as you gather letters. If you need help thinking of people to get letters from, create a Facebook post and ask around!

Round one: Open house
A commonly heard term during rush is “PNM,” which stands for potential new member. The first round of rush at Clemson is labeled PNM Convocation; however, there are procedures before stepping on campus. Before you arrive at Clemson and begin attending rush parties, you will need to submit a video introducing yourself and answering questions such as, “What is unique about you;” more information will be given once registered.

The video is the first impression sororities will get of a PNM and takes the place of an open house. The best thing to do when making this video is to be yourself and make sure to dress so that you feel confident — look good, feel good!

Round two: Philanthropy
Philanthropy is the first in-person round, where invitations to parties will be given to the PNMs. This round is important to learn about every sorority’s individual philanthropy and service efforts.

There will be a PNM T-shirt given for this round to each of the thousands of girls rushing, so finding a unique way to style this is a great way to boost confidence going into rounds. Wearing a cute skirt with dressy tennis shoes is a classic and cute option to match the T-shirt!

Round three: Sisterhood

The Sisterhood round is when each sorority demonstrates what is special about their chapter. This may include their values and allow a more personal conversation with the PNM, which allows a deeper connection with sororities so that you can make the most well-informed decision come the preference round.

Wearing a cute and casual dress with platform sandals would be the best way to dress for this round.

Preference round
The preference round is the most formal of all the rounds, and this is when the most meaningful conversations will be had. This round aims to understand where a PNM feels comfortable and at home. This will require a more semi-formal or cocktail-style dress with heels or platforms to match the atmosphere.

Before everything starts, the best thing you can do for yourself is not to stress — you will end up exactly where you are meant to be! To prepare for parties, it is generally a good idea to bring a bag with things like a mini notebook to write down initial thoughts about the sororities, deodorant, lip-gloss or anything else you feel you may need.

Perhaps most importantly, do not listen to other people’s opinions. It can be easy to get caught up in talking about the details of rush and hearing where your friends want to go, but rush whichever sorority feels like home to you! 

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Anne Marie Lessig
Anne Marie Lessig, Multimedia Personality
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