My Story: To Rush or Not To Rush

Via Flickr
 Via Flickr
 Ana Glassman  

As a freshman at a university with over fifty Greek organizations and approximately 45% of the student population as members of this "elite grouping," the question all freshmen face in that first year seems obvious: to rush or not to rush?
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For me the answer was instantaneous; I was rushing. From the origins of my days in college, I had been taunted by unveiling the mystery behind rush and determining which sorority was my perfect fit among them. Moreover, I was drawn to being an integral member of an expansive sisterhood. After a semester of anticipation and an extremely rough adjustment period, I was filled with disappointment when, during Christmas break, I received a letter informing me that I had failed chemistry and was no longer eligible to rush that spring. In my typical dramatic fashion, I firmly believed my social life had perished with my academic failures.

I sat at my parents’ house contemplating my imminent social suicide, jealous of the various girls who would be eagerly returning to campus to delve into what I felt was the most influential and exciting portion of college. An eternal optimist, I chose my only option: hold my head high and accept that I wasn’t going to join a premade sisterhood this year. With this knowledge in mind, I set forth on a journey to create my own sisterhood outside of the Greek world. This adventure turned out to be one of the most defining journeys of my life, full of unexpected friendships that will last a lifetime. Although I did not realize it at the time, no rushing freshman year provided the opportunity to surround myself with a diverse array of people that I may not have had the option to encounter as friends, had I been in Greek Life that year.

When that daunting question, ‘to rush or not to rush’ began to be whispered around campus my sophomore year, I no longer had the same innate reaction. I was realistic and knew that rushing as a sophomore was no easy feat; it was cutthroat. I had already found the best friends anyone could ask for over the past year. Did I really need to be judged by hundreds of girls whose main goal was to determine if I was worthy of bearing the letters of their organization? No, I did not need to join a sorority to find sisterhood. However, did Iwant to rush? Yes, I still had a longing to experience Greek life.

That spring, as a sophomore, I returned a week early with all the giddy freshman to expand my school family further. Being denied the ability to rush freshman year seemed so devastating, but it turned out to be the biggest blessing in disguise. As I came out the other side of rush as a proud member of a sorority, I finally understood the mystery. I am elated to have experienced college as both a GDI and a sister of a formal greek organization. This allowed me to experience a breadth of situations I would otherwise have been closed off to. Would I change this? No, I would not change it in a million years.

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