Skip to content

Cart

Your cart is empty

How to Register for Sorority Recruitment | mazi + zo sorority jewelry

Formal Sorority Recruitment starts with registration; use our guide to nail it.

Article: How to Register for Sorority Recruitment: A Comprehensive Guide

pre-recruitment

How to Register for Sorority Recruitment: A Comprehensive Guide

Introduction

"All I have to do is sign up, right?" That’s what I thought before I clicked the link to register for sorority recruitment and saw the requirements! It’s an assignment! While the application process is not as rigorous as college admissions, you’ll spend as much time with your sorority as you do in class, so you should put real thought and energy into it. We want to help you put your best foot forward, so here are our best tips for submitting a great application with the least amount of stress!

Understanding Sorority Recruitment

Formal sorority recruitment is run by your college or university’s College Panhellenic Council or the Office of Greek Life or something that sounds like that. Registration for Fall recruitment usually begins in May and ends in July, and for Spring recruitment, it usually begins in late fall and ends before the end of the year. Every school runs on a different schedule, though, so once you’ve decided where you’re going to school, look up the information and put it on your calendar. You can usually find it on the college website or in the college’s Panhellenic social media feeds. You’ll want to note the registration timeline as well as the actual dates for mandatory recruitment events and bid day so you can make sure you’re available for the whole process.

Think about every element of registration as an advertisement for you, like a traditional resume.

Start Early and Plan Ahead

We strongly advise you to start your application early. There’s a lot to do and a lot of it’s the kind of stuff that’s good to run by people you trust and it’s not nice to rush them. In addition, if you are submitting letters of recommendation, you’ll want to allow ample time for your recommenders to compose and send the letters.

Registration Requirements

As with timing, different schools have different registration requirements. A lot of schools use CampusDirector software and will link to it from their site. The first page will list everything you need to complete registration, and we’ve looked at a few to create a representative checklist. Once you know what you need to prepare, work on it offline before you start the online registration so you can submit it all at once.

From the start, think about every element of registration as an advertisement for you, like a traditional resume. It’s not about what you can get from the sorority; rather, it’s about what you bring to the table and why they should want you as a member.

Plan

  • Checklist: Create your own checklist and put a deadline to each event. Some things are easy, and some might take longer, so make sure you plan enough time. And like any plan, something’s bound to go wrong, so build in an extra week to be safe.
  • Student ID: Required to set up your account.
  • Payment: You’ll need to pay the non-refundable registration fee, usually with a credit or debit card. Different schools have different fees, and they seem to range from a low of $30 all the way up to $375.
  • Activities: Create a complete list of extracurricular activities, honors, community service, work experience, etc.

Format

Most of the registration sites will ask you to enter your content into form fields. In this scenario, we suggest you compose the information in a Google Doc or wherever you like to write, so you can edit and proofread your content before you submit.

Some schools require this same type of content in more of a resume format. There are lots of examples and templates online to follow, and this can be a more relaxed format than you’d use to apply for an internship or those you might see in most “how to write a resume” articles. We suggest searching for “social resume” or “sorority resume” for ideas. 

This resume generally includes your contact information, school & GPA, honors and awards, extracurricular activities, leadership experience, community service and volunteer work, work experience, skills, interests, and sorority connections. 

Try to keep your resume to one page-- if Fortune 500 CEOs can fit their resume on one page, you can, too. 

DOs and DON’Ts

DO:

  • Include academic awards, team sports, clubs, student government roles, and any other ways you’ve been involved at school, particularly leadership roles.
  • Include community service and volunteer work you’ve done through school or in your community and highlight leadership roles or special projects you’ve run (things like fundraisers or meal deliveries.)
  • Include other organized activities outside of school like sports, music, art, dance, etc.
  • Include part-time and summer jobs you’ve held.
  • Include activities, interests, talents, and skills that you enjoy on your own or with friends or family that aren’t officially organized, like horseback riding, photography, learning Italian, fashion, cooking, writing, etc.
  •  If you’re participating in recruitment in spring, or if you’re a sophomore or junior, include college activities.
  • Edit to keep it specific and also concise.
  • Ask someone you trust to review what you’ve written.
  • Run a spellcheck and proofread
  • Rename any files with clear names like “Lila-Press-resume.pdf.”

DON’T:

  • Exaggerate or lie about anything.
  • Include every single thing you’ve ever done or you’ll overwhelm readers. Focus on your key accomplishments.
  • Include anything from before high school.
  • Include personal media handles unless they directly relate to your accomplishments.
  • Upload a file with a messy name like “sororityresumev2.momsnotes.pdf.”

Essays

Write these out before you begin the registration process so you can edit and proofread. You may be asked to write 1-5 of them, or you might be given a list of prompts with the direction to choose some number to answer. When you consider your responses, think about them as they relate to sorority life and how you’re presenting yourself. This is great preparation for recruitment because these topics generally overlap with those that recruiters might ask.

Topics might include why you want to join a sorority, what you’re planning to study and why, what you’re passionate about, and more. See below in the video section for content tips.

Legacy Information

Legacy status does not guarantee a bid

If your sister, mother, grandmother, or aunt is/was in a sorority that’s on your campus, you’re a potential legacy to that chapter. (NOTE: It’s not technically correct, but recruiters will describe you as a legacy before or whether or not you join their organization and we do, too, so the language can be a little weird.) The sorority member doesn’t need to have attended your school. Some sororities will accept cousins as legacies as well.

Legacy status does not guarantee a bid, but some chapters will give special attention or preference to legacies out of respect for the original member. Even if a sorority doesn’t give any official weight to legacies, they’re still not going to let you fall through the cracks. This might mean the chapter president or another officer will make a point to seek you out for conversation. It could mean that all things being equal, you’d be invited back ahead of someone without a connection. It might also mean that if a sorority cuts you, they’re required to make a courtesy call to the member who’s in your family.

You do not have to include legacy information if you don’t want to. Some people advise against including legacy details to avoid a situation where another sorority assumes you’re only interested in sororities where you’re a legacy so they don’t invest in you. It’s considered best practice for the recruitment office to only share your legacy status with the chapter where you’d be a legacy, but word can get around. When you list a sorority member as your legacy relation if you’re participating in recruitment in spring or if you’re a sophomore or jun if you’re participating in recruitment in spring or if you’re a sophomore or junior, include their full name (including maiden name if it’s different from their legal name), their relation to you, the sorority name, and the college or university where they were initiated.

Photo

Don’t worry, the sororities are not using this photo or photos to judge you. They will use this to help keep track of who is who during the recruitment chaos (the process can be as overwhelming for recruiters as it is for potential new members). This is usually a headshot and lots of potential new members (PNMs) use their senior portraits. Make sure it’s bright and clear, shows your full face, includes only you, and projects the image you want to present for recruitment.

We don’t recommend having professional hair and makeup unless you do that regularly. Chapters want to see the real you, the person they’ll meet during recruitment. Pay attention to the format and size requirements specified, and if they don’t specify a file name convention, use your name like “Lila-Press-Headshot.jpg.”

High School Transcript

If required, make sure you upload it in the specified format and name it clearly.

Video

This can be the most intimidating part of the process, but it doesn’t need to be. It’s a chance to express your personality and, to be honest, at schools with a lot of potential new members going through recruitment, recruiters won’t even have time to watch them. But assuming they do watch, here are some tips:

You want to be memorable and stand out, and you can do that with what you say and/or the action in the video. This is where you can get more creative. Remember Elle Woods’s Harvard Law admission video? Of course, you do. It engaged you from the start and effectively showed off her smarts and goals. Elle’s video was a bit over-the-top for a sorority recruitment video, but it shows how you can be the authentic you and still communicate your strengths.

Think About What You’re Trying to Get Across

Write out what you want to say ahead of time. Practice but don’t memorize so you can sound natural. If you’re going to do something that involves movement or props, plan it out, don’t wing it. Pay attention to the specifics on format and length. Do not go over time.

  • For best sound quality, shoot in a quiet area and use a mic if you have one.
  • Shoot somewhere with good light; natural light is always best, and you can also use a ring light.

Background

If you’re talking to the camera and don’t need props, keep the background clean and uncluttered. You want them to watch you, not try to discern which makeup brands are on the table behind you.

Your Appearance

The goal is to communicate that you care about the recruitment process and take it seriously. As with the photo, don’t bother with professional makeup and blowout unless that’s your everyday look. At the same time, this isn’t the time for a messy bun. Wear an outfit that you’d wear to an interview (or to a specific activity, if that’s your video concept). Don’t be sloppy or go too sexy. You don’t want your clothes to overshadow your message. Keep the tone upbeat and smile. Imagine you’re talking to friends. Don’t chew gum! Double-check your setup before you go too far.

Content

The most important thing here is to present your authentic self. Video submissions usually come with prompts so you don’t have to start from scratch. Some prompts you might see are:

  • Introduce yourself or tell us about yourself: Start with your age, name, hometown, and what you’re planning to study. After that, you can include your hobbies and interests. You want to be memorable, so try to include something that makes you special right from the start. People remember specific details more than generalizations, so instead of saying “I love dogs,” you might say something like “I love my goofy Australian Shepherd and trained him to bring me his leash when he wants to go out.”
  • What were you involved with in high school and/or what are your hobbies?: This is a great place to edit in some media like shots of you playing a sport, on stage, debating, or whatever your thing is. Don’t tell them you bake amazing cakes; show them a picture of a masterpiece.
  • What are you planning to major in?: When you state your major, explain why you chose it or tell a story about what inspired your interest. For example, "I plan to major in psychology because I’ve always been fascinated by how the human mind works. In high school, I volunteered at our local veterans association hospital, which solidified my desire to pursue this field."
  • Who’s your hero?: Think about this. Does your hero sync up with the rest of your submission? Again, tell a story or give a specific detail to explain your choice. For example, "My hero is Malala Yousafzai. Her bravery and dedication to education, even in the face of danger, inspire me to advocate for girls' education rights."
  • What’s your greatest accomplishment so far?: Don’t worry if you haven’t done something that would be in the news or Guinness Book of Records; it’s all in the telling. If you’re proud that you overcame a fear of water to learn to swim, that story illustrates your vulnerability and also your perseverance.
  • Tell us something about yourself that would surprise most people: This is a great opportunity to be memorable by communicating something that didn’t fit in any of the previous submission criteria. “I’m the oldest of 12 children,” or “I’ve traveled to every US national park,” or “I am a dual citizen,” or “I’m legally blind,” and back it up with a detail or anecdote that reflects well on you.
  • Why do you want to join a sorority?: This is a key question. Don’t waste your breath on a generic answer like “so many new friends.” Instead, consider sorority values and use this question as an opportunity to showcase or reiterate something about yourself that fits those values. For example, "I want to join a sorority because I value community service and leadership. I admire how sororities on this campus lead charitable events and provide mentorship opportunities. I believe my background in organizing community clean-up projects and serving as class president aligns well with these values."

If you’re great with video production or editing, you can absolutely use those talents to make this video more than just a talking head. Feel free to be creative, as long as you stay within the specified brief. However, if video isn’t your strong suit, be honest with yourself because an amateurish video won’t reflect well on you. In any case, don’t overthink it. Be yourself and focus on your message.

Parental Consent Forms

Many schools require a parent or guardian to consent to a PNM going through recruitment. Don't let this one fall through the cracks!

Recommendation Letters

This got really long so we covered Letters of Recommendation in their own post!

Alumnae support

Remember, you don’t have to do this alone. Even if your mother or sister isn’t in a sorority, we bet you know someone who is. Ask around and see if you can find someone who can help you, either an alum or an active collegiate member at another school (you should not speak about recruitment to active sorority members at your own school.) You can also reach out directly to local Panhellenic alumnae chapters; they’re easy to find on social media.


This sounds like a lot, we know, but sorority membership is worth it. We promise. Good luck!