Even to the literally initiated, those who have participated in sorority rush several times over themselves, the scene can be unsettling, dredging up memories of the worst week of the year.
(Anyone who disagrees is lying.) The girls in that Alpha Delta Pi video will probably execute their routine a dozen more times that day, for several days. They’re packed in that doorframe like sardines; some schools have even banned this formation due to reported injuries, ranging in severity from minor cuts and bruises to concussions.
Today, the National Panhellenic Conference, or NPC, recognizes 26 different sororities.
Bids invite them to pledge the group, with the goal of becoming a full-fledged initiated sister by the end of the semester.
At the University of Alabama, which hosts 17 NPC sororities, a record 93 percent of recruits got bids in 2016, but at a smaller school like Cornell, with 13 sororities, only 69 percent of recruits were offered membership.
And, of course, some houses are more desirable than others, even if no one wants to admit it.
For those who are used to in-group status, or who seek in-group status after being denied it earlier in their teens, Greek life promises not just a sense of self, but a sense of belonging.
The earliest women’s collegiate organizations, which would later become the Greek-lettered groups we know today, began forming in the early 1850s as a reaction to women being barred from the secret societies founded by their male peers.