The Panhellenic Council voted 6-4 Monday night to invite Alpha Gamma Delta to become the 11th Panhellenic sorority on campus.
Delegates representing each sorority chapter voted anonymously. Panhellenic Council President Megan Lambert said Alpha Gamma Delta had some advantages.
“Both houses put a lot into their presentation. Alpha Gamma Delta just came out slightly stronger,” Lambert said. “[Their representatives] were very prepared. They had been at USC before so they had almunae here to help them, they had a lot of local support and … they really put a lot into their presentation.”
Lambert said Alpha Gamma Delta alumnae also own a house on The Row.
Alpha Gamma Delta is an international women’s fraternity that promotes academic excellence, philanthropic giving, leadership, personal development and sisterhood. Founded in 1904, it has 185 chapters at colleges across North America, with more than 160,000 initiated members internationally.
Initially established at USC in 1928, the Alpha Gamma Delta chapter at USC has been dormant. They still have a house at USC, however, that is currently rented out to Alpha Kappa Psi.
The decision to add a new sorority at USC began last year.
“The process started with an expansion exploration committee with a delegate from each house represented,” Lambert said.
Out of the three sororities that initially applied to form a chapter at USC, the council narrowed it down to two: Alpha Xi Delta and Alpha Gamma Delta.
The two sororities were invited to give a presentation and to conduct mock recruitment at USC. Approximately 200 delegates representing each house in the Panhellenic Council attended the mock recruitment and then met to give feedback.
A new Panhellenic sorority has not been added to campus since 2007, when Sigma Delta Tau established a chapter at USC, Lambert said.
“More and more girls are going to recruitment,” Lambert said. “We have some of the biggest chapters on the West Coast. There are a couple of houses with 230 to 250 members, which is too big. We felt a new sorority might alleviate some of those numbers.”
Lambert said, some members of the Panhellenic Council were concerned about the addition of a new sorority because there are some sororities that are not at a capacity of 150 girls.
“People were worried that a new sorority might bring more competition to those houses,” Lambert said. “There will be a big push in the next few years to make sure the smaller houses are up to total.”
Alpha Gamma Delta will be officially established in 2013 and will go through formal recruitment in 2014 so that smaller sororities can reach capacity.