The Panhellenic Council has changed the official schedule for formal recruitment for the upcoming fall semester.
Due to the first home football game taking place after the first week of classes, formal recruitment will begin with the symposium — the first event of the recruitment calendar — on the Friday before the first week of class.
Following the symposium, conversation days will take place on Saturday and Sunday, with house tours on Monday and Tuesday, slide show night on Wednesday and house preference selection on Thursday. The week will conclude with Bid Night on the Friday before the football game.
According to Panhellenic Council President Katherine Grabar, the schedule change was implemented to eliminate a gap between the first recruitment stages and Bid Night.
“We were comparing it to the schedule two years ago [when] we had a home game the first week of class,” Grabar said.
Grabar explained how that year the schedule was laid out in order to allow the home football game to be the middle of the recruitment process.
“We started conversation days on Sunday and Monday, then we had house tours on Tuesday and Wednesday, then narrowing it down to four houses was Thursday,” Grabar said. “Then, the max of two houses was on Friday. We then took a break for the game day.”
Grabar also discussed how the university has previously been reluctant to schedule formal recruitment early in the school year.
“The university has typically been hesitant to have early fall recruitment because the university wants the students to assimilate into USC first,” Grabar said.
Grabar explained, however, that the change in recruitment schedule is more academically beneficial for potential new members going through the recruitment process.
“The most intensive part of recruitment would occur before classes start,” Grabar said. “Sunday was typically a really intense day for conversation days for those with early Monday classes.”
Panhellenic Vice President of Recruitment Cat Brackett discussed how pausing the recruitment schedule for the football game can also create potentially dangerous situations.
“This mid-recruitment social activity … left potential new members alone to fend for themselves and monitor their own alcohol intake on their first game day,” Brackett said. “This was dangerous and devastating for many potential new members and may have caused a number of new member hospital transports in the past.”
Brackett also discussed the benefit of changing formal recruitment scheduling.
“Our recruitment counselors will even have a less stressful first week as well by not having the overwhelming task of conflict scheduling conversation days around each of their potential new members’ class schedules,” Brackett said. “This makes the process easier not only for many of our chapters and for potential new members, but for the Panhellenic recruitment team as well.”
Gwen Holst, a sophomore majoring in philosophy, politics and law, political economy and neuroscience and a member of Alpha Gamma Delta, commented on how the first home game can potentially be a bonding experience for new members.
“Come [game day], once recruitment results are known, the pilgrimage to the Coliseum will be an excellent opportunity to rendezvous either with members of a new organization or friends made during the recruitment process,” Holst said.
Some, however, disagree with the decision.
Lindsay Dale, a junior majoring in communication and a member of Alpha Chi Omega, believes that an earlier recruitment schedule might make the recruitment more difficult for both active and new members.
“It’s an awful inconvenience for sorority actives and rushees alike,” Dale said. “This means that everyone already in sororities will have to cut their summer even shorter to prepare for rush.”