The Interfraternity Council has made several changes in its spring recruitment strategy to attract a larger group of Penn State students.
In a departure from previous years, this spring’s IFC recruitment period is already underway and will be shorter in order to accommodate new members’ participation in the IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon, according to IFC Executive Vice President Lorenzo Massaro.
In addition to recruitment kicking off earlier, this year, IFC reinstated certain rules that go along with wristbands, so fraternity members can tell who is involved in the recruitment process. If the person has a wristband, he is not allowed to consume alcohol during the recruitment process, IFC Vice President of Communications Jordan Rolon said.
“We don’t want people to join for the wrong reasons,” Rolon (junior- recreation, park and tourism management) said.
Rolon said that the rules associated with the wristbands were discontinued in fall 2010, but the council voted for the reinstatement. If a person who is rushing is caught drinking or without a wristband, he is removed from recruitment and the fraternity is subject to punishment, Rolon said.
“It makes people feel accountable,” he said.
IFC Vice President of Recruitment Pat Adams said other goals for this semester are to increase numbers and to reach out to more people.
During last year’s spring recruitment, about 600 people attended the information sessions, more than 400 registered and more than 350 joined fraternities, Adams (junior-supply chain and information sciences) said.
Though 50 fraternities are included in spring recruitment, the number of people rushing is smaller than fall recruitment. But IFC members think this semester will produce a good turnout and are hoping to reverse that trend, Massaro (senior-crime, law and justice) said.
“Most kids who want to join do so in the fall. We promote greek life so much that they want to join right away,” Adams said.
To make spring recruitment easier, IFC created an app that includes all the fraternities’ head of recruitment chairs’ information, a map, emails and other information needed.
The first week of recruitment included two information sessions that about 250 people attended, Adams said. People who want to rush have to attend at least one information session, sign up on the Penn State IFC website and pay a $10 fee.
This upcoming week includes zoning days. The houses are broken into three sections and given a color: green, red or blue. Each color is given a day, and on that day, the fraternities have open houses starting at 4 p.m. to meet the brothers. This part of recruitment is completely dry to make the process safer, Adams said.
At the open houses, the brothers give tours, serve food and tell the future pledges about history. Fraternities without houses are given a room on campus that hopeful pledges can visit, Adams said.
During week three of the recruitment, the houses have events, which are less formal and can range from poker night to playing football, Adams said. The potential pledges sign in their name and give their phone number so they can be invited back to a future event.
On Tuesday Jan. 29, the bids are sent out and have to be accepted by Thursday, Jan 31. The number of bids that can be offered is unlimited, but the future new member can only accept one.