Prospective fraternity members descended on Greek town June 27-29 in record numbers for MU’s annual Interfraternity Council formal recruitment.
IFC welcomed 550 potential new members, up from last year’s 416 participants, IFC Vice President of Recruitment Joel Yeager said.
This is the third consecutive year of record registration. MU played host to what was then a record 363 men during IFC’s 2012 formal recruitment, and it has only gone up since then.
In order to adjust to the large increase in registration, a couple changes were made, mostly in order to allow adequate time for members and chapters to familiarize themselves with each other.
“As IFC Recruitment grows, we are constantly working to improve the process and make sure that formal recruitment serves both the chapters and the potential members,” Yeager said.
Prospective members, or rushees, arrived Friday. Soon after their arrival, they attended the Chapter Expo, an event which allows potential members to familiarize themselves with each of the 31 IFC chapters. This event was lengthened this year in order to accommodate for the increase in registration.
Following the Chapter Expo, rushes marked their top ten fraternities, and rated the remaining chapters 12-21.
Keeping these lists in mind, Rho Gammas, who are essentially IFC recruitment camp counselors, scheduled visits for Saturday to the 10 chapters recruitment rushes showed most interest in.
By stationing themselves around campus, the Rho Gammas’ objective was to streamline the recruitment process for rushees.
“We were there as a resource to both make sure they were where they were supposed to be and as a resource to answer any questions they may have had about Greek Life,” Austin Evans, a 2014 IFC Rho Gamma and Sigma Nu member, said.
In order to schedule a visit with a fraternity, rushees had to be invited, but most were allowed visits to all 10 chapters they declared interest in due to the brevity of their initial meetings, Evans said.
On Saturday, the process repeated itself on a smaller scale as potential members visited each of their preferred chapters. These visits were lengthened to one hour in order to allow the increased number of registrants adequate time to familiarize themselves with their prospective chapters.
Similar to the Chapter Expo, rushees selected their top four of the 10 fraternities visited, and rated the remaining five to 10.
Depending if they were invited, rushes revisited their preferred fraternities Sunday. Later that evening, each rushee met with their Gamma Rho, who informed rushees which chapters had expressed interest in their membership.
Although IFC formal recruitment is a major event that has experienced increased popularity in recent years, it is not the only means to gain Greek membership at MU.
For example, Daniel Moser joined Delta Chi informally after interacting with other members in his classes.
Moser said the benefits of membership include opportunities for campus involvement and forging lasting friendships. He went on to rush fall 2013, and was initiated into Delta Chi in November 2013.
“Being initiated into a fraternity and forming such a brotherhood has more to offer than what most stereotype it to be. Campus involvement, Homecoming, new friends, or as my Delta Chi brother Brian Reamer would say, ‘It’s all about the networking,'” Moser said.
Despite his informal recruitment process and later initiation, Moser said he still advises those interested in Greek membership to participate in formal recruitment their freshman year.
“I would recommend to every guy rushing to do it freshman year. Your classes are the easiest they’ll ever be and you’re in the dorms with other fraternity guys,” Moser said. “It’ll make pledgeship much more manageable and enjoyable.”
However, according to Moser, whether gaining membership formally or informally, the outcome is same.
“Being a part of an organization that is always there for you in times of triumph and misfortune is a true blessing and honor to have,” Moser said.