Let’s Keep Recruiting!
Being a sorority woman, specifically an Alpha Sigma Alpha, is a REMARKABLE experience. We get to share this bond that makes us instantly care for one another. We get to meet and connect with so many amazing people with who we may never have crossed paths before. We get to celebrate our similarities and uniqueness side by side.
Think for a second, what’s your favorite part of being an Alpha Sigma Alpha?
It’s something remarkable, isn’t it? Maybe it’s someone who is the most radiant and resilient person you know. Maybe it’s an opportunity you were afforded by connecting with sisters. Maybe it’s knowing someone cares for you and your wellbeing. No matter what it is, it had an impact on you and there is someone out there looking for something similar.
This is why we recruit and continue recruiting all year. Our job is to find the people who need this experience and extend the opportunity to them.
In the past, chapters haven’t had to do much COB. Most of the time they were at campus Total after primary “formal” recruitment so there was no eligibility to extend bids of membership late in the term. However, we are starting to see trends reverse. More chapters are relying on COB to maintain their chapter size year to year.
With this rise in COB, especially late in the term, other concerns start to arise. Just as we had to change our mindset on COB, we have to change our mindset on all aspects of membership impacted by COB. Here are some common concerns and recommended solutions:
Concern: Bid day already happened
Solution: Because you will be extending bids of membership one, or a few, at a time it’s important to make the process special to the individual, not the chapter. This new member doesn’t need a sheet cake and matching t-shirts to celebrate her bid. Instead, use her connections in the chapter to determine what would be special to her. Consider showing up at her door with 3-5 people and a cupcake or a balloon. Bring her to a sisterhood event the chapter planned on having anyways. Make an announcement welcoming her during her first chapter meeting. Allow her to pick out a t-shirt or two from the overstock pile. Keep it individualized. This advice can apply to multiple aspects of the new member process including big sister reveal, dedication days and more.
Concern: Managing multiple membership education timelines
Solution: Ask the VP of membership education how the chapter can support her. Consider asking someone who is planning to apply for the VP of membership education job next year or a potential big sister to help out. Ease up on potential big sister requirements by asking who is available to attend rather than saying all must be in attendance. It’s important to understand what the specific concern is to find the best solution. Get in contact with your region membership commitment leader for more ideas to manage multiple membership education timelines.
Concern: It’s too much to host multiple Phoenix Degree and Sanctuary Degree Services
Solution: Ritual services are not meant to be tasking. Dive deeper into why these services seem like “too much.” Are there unnecessary expectations we are putting on members who attend? Could we consider asking a small group of members to attend rather than the entire chapter? If you still have concerns, contact your region facilitator to discuss how your chapter can best accommodate multiple ritual services throughout the term.
Concern: The campus has a recruitment cutoff date
Solution: NPC Unanimous Agreement VI. College Panhellenic Association Agreement section 2B protects Alpha Sigma Alpha’s right to use continuous open bidding (COB) to reach campus Total during the regular school, year. Schedule a meeting with your fraternity/sorority advisor or college Panhellenic president to discuss this unanimous agreement and their concerns in allowing the chapter to continue recruiting. Once the concern is identified, work to address that concern specifically. Show them this article! If, after discussing this topic with the chapter leaders, the fraternity/sorority advisor still has concerns, please ask them to contact the national headquarters office at (317) 871-2920. It is your right to recruit and we want to make sure nothing stands in your way of growth and success!
Concern: We can’t finish new member education and initiation before the term ends
Solution: We have a hold-over process that ensures a new member’s education can be paused over school breaks but remain appropriate and respectful! A holdover can also be used in the case of serious illness or if the new member does not meet the GPA requirement for initiation. The vice president of membership education can request a holdover by submitting information on Officer Portal including the reason for the holdover, the number of completed new member education lessons, the date the school term resumes and the date for remaining new member education lesson, dedication days and the Sanctuary Degree Service. It is inappropriate to pause the new member process during the academic term so new member education for the holdover will continue as soon as the classes resume.
Jen Akright, HH
Collegiate Recruitment Coordinator