Fraternities see high turnout at Fall rush

by Kate Lyon | 10/13/04 5:00am

High turnout has defined the first Fall term fraternity rush in three years, but although Greek leaders concur that the process went well, they noted that some aspects of holding rush in the fall require adjustment.

At the time of publication, Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity had 18 sunk bids, Chi Heorot, 25; Chi Gamma Epsilon, 23; Sigma Phi Epsilon, 21; Theta Delta Chi, 28; Psi Upsilon, 24; Alpha Delta, 21; Phi Delta Alpha, 19; Kappa Kappa Kappa, 20; Bones Gate, 12; Gamma Delta Chi , 11; and Alpha Chi Alpha, 24. These numbers may fluctuate, however, and numbers for Sigma Nu were not available at this time.

The size of pledge classes at various fraternities reflects the concentration of the main rush initiative into a single term because of the typically high fall enrollment.

"This is larger than a typical rush term, sort of a combination of winter and spring, so it makes sense that the number of bids sunk is up from what they have been when rush was a two-part process," said Inter-Fraternity Council President David Grey '05.

With 23 sunk bids, rush chair Stephen Clarke '05 said this characterization fits the Chi Gam pledge class.

"Since our '05 class is so small, and we just graduated an enormous '04 class, it was really important for us to get a good number this fall," he said. "With a goal for each year of about 25, this was nearly perfect number-wise."

Other houses cited similar satisfaction with the size of their pledge classes.

"The success of this fall's rush further supports the merits of holding rush in the fall, and I hope this continues to be the case in the years to come," said Phi Delt President Rob Freiman '05.

The return to Fall term rush did pose some challenges for brothers and potential new members alike. Clarke said there seemed to be more rushees who were undecided about where they wanted to pledge than in past years. He attributed this to the fact that they had one less term of experience with the Greek system.

"I believe the uncertainty stemmed from the fact that the '07s were simply not on campus for as long as the '04s, '05s and '06s were before they rushed," Clarke said.

"The fraternities themselves were sort of taken off-guard by the swiftness with which rush fell upon us this fall. Not many of us did as much in the way of recruiting last spring for the '07s as we had done the previous fall for the '06s," he added.

Rush occurred over three days this year -- as opposed to two in past years -- a time span that some houses felt was excessively long.

"It is really just a waste of two hours because about 99 percent of the rushees know where they want to shake out at by the first night," said Heorot rush chair Nick Peay '05. "We had 23 sinks the first night, and then two the past two nights," he said.

As a result of the higher number of bids sunk this fall, the IFC is currently undecided as to whether there will be an official rush period in the winter. Houses will, however, be able to offer bids winter term if a formal rush is not held, said Grey.