‘Black Mirror’ recruitment

How sororities rate potential new members and why fraternities should do it too

By on September 19, 2017

Before we begin, to very briefly explain, the sorority recruitment process covers a span of three days in which people, who are considering joining a sorority, visit each of the Greek communities available on campus. This gives potential new members (PNM’s) a chance to see which organization they like the most as well as for all the sororities to see if they feel the PNM is the right fit for their group.

On the other hand, fraternities will have a number of (rush) events for which PNM’s can choose to attend, whether that be to visit just one, two or maybe only three of the many fraternal organizations here without having to engage with other potential fraternities that they may also like.

The other day, I heard that some sororities use a virtual rating system, a mobile feature they can use while engaging with potential new members, which helps assess whether they are the right fit for their club. The app they use is called Selectasis (select-a-sis/sister). There are some that didn’t use the virtual method this semester and decided to use a written method instead. The rating system ranks how closely associated the PNM’s are to the values of the sisterhood and is a tool used to help both the members of the organization and the PNM’s to see if they would do well in upholding their core values and being a good representative of Greek Life.

A great aspect of this recruitment scheme is how each PNM has to visit all of the houses and are engaged in conversation with members of each sorority. I love how this really broadens the PNM’s awareness within Greek Life as they are really encouraged to be sure of themselves when choosing the sorority that fits them best.

As much as fraternities have many rush events available to people, it’s not the same as how sororities involve people. As a part of the ‘rush process,’ PNM’s visit other sororities, clarifying and expanding their understanding of the sororities. On the other hand, with fraternities it seems a lot more sheltered, as they don’t engage with other fraternities and don’t make it part of their process to visit other fraternities.

Therefore, in a way, I wish recruitment for fraternities was much like the sorority process, as I feel that it doesn’t narrow or limit a person to just that one organization as you are exposed to all of the sororities.

There are some people who have just rushed one fraternity thinking that this fraternity is the only place they see themselves without having engaged with other potential great fraternities that may actually be a better fit for them.

The rating system that sororities use and how they use them is much like applying for multiple jobs. Perhaps it could be said that it’s like profiling an individual towards a job, making sure they’re the right fit for the workplace.

The rating system reminded me a lot of that one episode in “Black Mirror” called Nosedive (Season 3, episode 1). The episode does emanate qualities that reflect this assessment of character that sororities do, but on a magnified scale.

Even though the episode offers an abstract look, it is certainly very interesting. There is a loose connection between the sorority recruitment process and the show, as they both use a rating process based on their personality; although sororities focus harder on whether individuals hold core values as opposed to the episode where it judges your everyday life and essentially rules over your life.

The episode is set in a dystopian future and adds a dark twist to the rating system. People are rated on their lifestyle, how they interact with people and even their photos on Instagram can affect their overall “rating.” They can be “liked” or “disliked” much like social media. It could even be as brief as not saying hi back to someone and this could significantly affect your rating. The scale goes from zero to five stars and the closer you are to five, the more exclusively you are treated. This means you would have a significant discount on certain purchases, it could lead to you being bumped up to first class on planes or trains more regularly, enable you to potentially hire a better taxi or Uber than those who have a lower rating or perhaps even enable you to buy a better house.

This massively contrasts how sororities approach the rating system. Sororities have clearly used it for good, as they are using it to see if they would really mesh well with the other members of the sorority, assuring whether the PNM is a like-minded thinker and has a like-minded attitude in regards with their specific values.

It made me ponder, why don’t fraternities use the same method? It could perhaps help increase the interest of males getting involved with Greek Life and eradicate the stigma that all the fraternities are incredibly exclusive to each other. Ultimately, we all have the same goal and that is to help the community and make sure the potential new members are with the right crowd of friends to do so.

In addition, if fraternities used aspects of the sorority recruitment process, it would undoubtedly paint a more structured and organized system that boosts the image of what Greek Life is about. An active community that prepares you to become a better person for the real world after college, it’s something that will encourage people to make a massive impression and impact on the big bright new world out there. All this can be done with a motivated PNM who has clarity on which fraternity is best for them.

Shout out to the sororities for hopefully being an inspiration to fraternities for the future of recruitment.

 

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About Alessandro Woodbridge