MSU Greek life goes virtual

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One of the popular attractions in college is the social aspect of college, which includes doing Greek life. This upcoming school year, Greek life will join a long list of other social activities that will look different.  

Greek life at Michigan State allows students to not only xperience social venues at college, but also give them the opportunity to be a part of something bigger and get involved in philanthropy like ways never before that are both rewarding and fun for the students.

One of the most important parts of Greek life is membership and recruitment. The ability to be face-to-face and in close quarters with one another. 

This type of recruitment will need to be adjusted as both the Interfraternity and Panhellenic Council will need to adjust their ways in order to continue. 

Kate Vernier, who is the Panhellenic president said how this upcoming fall will be like no other due to everything going virtual. 

“This fall, formal recruitment will be completely virtual,” Vernier said. “We will be using an online platform, which has not been decided yet.” 

Spring as well is likely to look different, although plans have not fully been made, says Vernier. 

“While we haven’t started formally planning for spring recruitment, we plan to follow all local, state and university recommendations, as well as the recommendations from the National Panhellenic Council,” said Vernier. “Spring Recruitment will mostly be planned by the next Panhellenic Executive Board, but we hope to help them as much as possible throughout the planning process.”

One of the big concerns for recruitment this year is the amount of girls who will sign up. However, Vernier says how even with the pandemic, this is not the case. 

“As of now, there are more women signed up for formal recruitment than there were at this time last year,” said Vernier. “While it is still hard to predict the number of women who will sign up overall, the Panhellenic Council has continued our marketing and advertising efforts throughout the summer to try to encourage as many women as possible for formal recruitment.”

Of course with all this work there comes adjustments and roadblocks, but Vernier says the hardest part is not knowing. 

“I think the biggest challenge with everything going on is trying to prepare for the unknown,” said Vernier. “While we’ve been planning recruitment all summer, there have been so many new updates from the state, the university and the National Panhellenic Council that we have to take into consideration”

Vernier of course doesn’t deal with these updates on her own, as she has help from other members of the executive board, including Panhellenic Council Vice President of Recruitment Logistics Kate Notario.

Bid day for Sorority rush will likely be virtual and not at the Rock at MSU (Cred. Kate Vernier)

“As the Vice President of Recruitment Logistics, I’ve learned a lot about delegating and communicating through this,” said Notario. “I’ve been very lucky to have worked with an extremely supportive Panhellenic executive council, as well as having great advisors and assistants.”

The biggest question, however, is the way recruitment will be run and what potential new members can expect. 

“We will definitely be using Zoom and are still looking into other apps to use,” said Notario. “Finding the right apps and virtual platforms is essential because we want to make everyone as comfortable as possible with virtual recruitment, and offering them the right technology that is easy for them to use will definitely make this a more comfortable process.”

The plan for IFC

The Panhellenic Council is not the only council making adjustments to its recruitment tactics. 

“We are planning to have a lot of virtual aspects”, said President of the Interfraternity Council Daniel Wolfe. “Obviously recruitment is going to look different in previous semesters. Chapter members will learn to adapt with social virtual platforms like Zoom to find their respected chapters.” 

Wolfe says how the newest installment of virtual recruitment is with an app called Chapterbuilder, a mass communication program.

“Chapterbuilder acts as a master communication platform and has a list of all potential new members where they can interact with chapter members,” said Wolfe. “They can learn more about interests, where they are from, can chat with them on the app and such. Chapters are signed up for the app and individuals sign up and login.”

Even one of Greek lifes largest events, Greek Fall Welcome, will move to going virtual for the first time, similar to a well known event at Michigan State.

“ It’s online, but will work in a similar fashion as Sparticipation, where chapters and councils will have individual booths and this will also give PNMs the opportunity to learn about chapters and the other councils,” said Wolfe. “Each offers their own unique leadership opportunities and involvement.”

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