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Hurricane Irma impacts Greek Recruitment

By CLAUDIA GUERRERO

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, Greek life recruitment on the UT campus currently is facing setbacks. Recruitment has been rescheduled for October. This highly awaited event was supposed to occur between Sept. 14-18, and its postponement has led to a rescheduling debacle that fraternities and sororities are currently trying to solve.

Before the semester starts, chapters try to have all events planned and scheduled so the execution of all these plans runs smoothly. Since recruitment has been pushed back, all other events that were scheduled for the semester have been pushed back as well. As a result this has created uncertainty, confusion and a disorganization that chapters’ presidents were not prepared for, presidents said.

Delta Zeta’s president, Daniela Quintyne, senior elementary education major, and her executive board spent the entire summer planning their busy calendar for the semester ahead. With recruitment and bidding process having a specific chronological order, she realized that much of that hard work didn’t matter. Quintyne said the postponement has been a setback for everyone considering new members won’t be joining until well into October.

“It’s really affected our calendar and now girls who had off of work for events now have to redo their schedules to try and get work off for when recruitment is, when we get our new members, when our rituals are, or other events,” Quintyne said.  

Recruitment’s delay could also have a major impact on freshmen who were planning on going through the process. Quintyne says that this could affect the potential new members entire experience.

“Their experience now is going to be different because they will be new members for most of the fall semester. Now with the postponing of recruitment they will become sisters towards the end of the semester, Quintyne said.

Mike Wheeler, junior Digital Arts major, student coordinator for sorority and fraternity life, shares Quintyne’s concern.

Normally, people know that the start of the year means recruitment right away,” Wheeler said. “Sororities had to frantically change around their recruitment practices, and pushing back recruitment could mean a loss in communication for people who want to go through recruitment and people might not be fully aware of the new schedule, which could potentially lose some interested people.”

Wheeler is convinced, however, that no matter the obstacle, the outcome for Greek life this year won’t be threatened.

“We are such a strong community who perseveres through any challenges we face, and moving around the recruitment schedule is only a small hiccup in what will be such an amazing year,” Wheeler said.

Tim Cucci, sophomore International Business major, also a student coordinator, said that even though there haven’t been any cancellations of major events, the Greek Programming Board has had to work diligently on rescheduling the entire semester.

“We will be doing the same amount of events this year just at different times,” Cucci said. [The Board] has done a fantastic job of adjusting our events. They have had to reschedule speakers, book new rooms, recreate entire events and much more.”

Cucci said that even though they have had to move things around, the important dates that everyone looks forward to every year are still under way, including National Hazing Prevention Week, Sexual Assault/Alcohol Awareness Week, Greeks Give Back and Greek Week.

In an effort to stay optimistic, Cucci said that the postponement is allowing the board members to have even more time to plan and make the events even more fun and impactful to all members in Fraternity and Sorority Life.

Although the community has had a rocky start, Greek members are eager to continue and get on track with the semester. Ryne Burds, coordinator of sorority and fraternity life, says that the setback has served its purpose.

“We are taking this opportunity to reevaluate programs, create new ones and look at ways we can create some even more positive changes to the Fraternity and Sorority Life community.”

You may contact Claudia Guerrero at claudia.guerrero@spartans.ut.edu

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