Sorority Recruitment 101: Here’s What To Wear For Every Round Of Rush
by Lauren Sanchez
This article was written by The Zillennial Zine’s fall editorial intern Lauren Sanchez. Find her on Instagram at @lauren.sanchezz. If you would like to share an article with The Zillennial, send us an email at email@example.com.
Sorority recruitment season is finally here and sisters across the nation have been waiting for you and this moment all summer! Suppose you haven’t already been bombarded by #RushTok and #BamaRush videos on TikTok of sorority sisters doing viral dances, dressing up to fit their themes or potential new members showing off their outfits of the days. In that case, you might have been living under a rock for the past few weeks.
On TikTok, girls of all different backgrounds and looks are becoming little internet personalities by simply sharing their recruitment journeys to their thousands and thousands of followers. From 45-second videos of potential new members (PNMS) going into detail about what’s in their rush bag to the drama that comes from being dropped by a top-tier sorority, TikTok simply can’t get enough of it.
As universities and colleges everywhere start up again for the fall semester and with sororities have already been working on recruitment since the spring (trust me, it’s a LONG process), greek life has never been more eager to take on new members and introduce you to a sisterhood where you’ll belong.
While the process of recruitment may look entirely different from college to college, one thing that remains the same is the importance of a first impression. And what better way to make a first impression than through your outfit!
Coming from an active sorority member, I can definitely say that what’s on the inside matters more than on the outside by a lot. But a simple dress or a pair of fun heels to wear can certainly help your build confidence and give you the chance to bring your personality into your fit – and sororities want to see your personality!
So, if you’ve been influenced by #RushTok to join or if you have already been planning on rushing and need a little bit of advice, here’s some guidance on some sorority rush outfits to wear during your recruitment journey that will help alleviate some stress and make you feel your best.
Day One: Round Robin/Open House Round
The first day of recruitment is always the most stressful. You have at least eight or more sororities to visit, your schedule is divided into 20-minute cramped sections to meet each house, girls are screaming and dancing around constantly and your energy needs to be high to meet the active sisters. In other words, it’s practically an entire day of speed-dating and it’s gruesome.
With such little time to spend with each sorority, a great first impression is an absolute must! The better impression you make on a sorority, the more chances you have of them inviting you back for future rounds and the more options you give yourself to choose from in the end.
While round-robin/open house is the one of the least formal events of the process, it is still a great opportunity to look your best. Think of this round as if you are dressing for a nice lunch or going on a date with someone. Dress to impress, but don’t go completely overboard. Save that for the preference round!
Depending on the panhellenic community, sometimes they might give you shirts to wear for the first day so everyone can dress the same and it lessens the stress of having to find another outfit. In that case, a nice skirt or a pair of jeans will go great with it. This satin silk skirt from Amazon comes in 25 different colors and this flared mini-skater skirt will look great with any Panhellenic shirt.
And if the panhellenic community doesn’t give you a shirt to wear, a cute skirt and top or a simple dress will do the trick. Brands like Lulus, Princess Polly, Francescas, Altar’d State and Amazon has an amazing selection of different dresses with unique prints and styles to fit any type of personality.
One important thing to note is that while you may want to wear heels or wedges, you will be doing a lot of walking and moving around. This pair of white tennis shoes will match any dress you choose and whether you decide to wear them throughout the day or pack them in your rush bag to change, these will help you to stay in the groove.
Day Two: Philanthropy Round
After a busy day or two of doing round robins and open houses, philanthropy day is all about learning about the sorority’s acts of service. Many organizations will have a designated charity or organization they dedicate their time to and raise money for. Whether that’d be raising money for breast cancer awareness, women’s rights or children’s hospitals, this day is dedicated to learning about selflessness.
If you haven’t already received a shirt from the panhellenic committee, this will be the day you get one. Considering it’s a day that’s dedicated to acts of service, your outfit might not be the most important part but it’s still a good idea to try and look your best. Pairing the shirt with a pair of trendy jeans, fun pants, a skirt or a cute pair of shorts will be your best bet.
But if you’re given the fashion freedom to wear whatever your heart desires, a cute outfit such as a romper or a simple dress could help. Think of it as a little brunch moment or a picnic date with your besties – keep it clean and cute, but fashionable.
Day Three: Sisterhood Round
Sisterhood is the round where you learn all about the sorority’s values and what they look for in their active and potential sisters. This round tends to be a little fancier than the others because you are actively engaging with the sisters to see if you both are a mutually good fit for each other.
The dressing up bit is something to take advantage of, so feel free to wear an outfit that you might wear to a birthday dinner or a graduation party.
My recommendations for the cutest yet dressy outfits are from Lulus, ASOS, American Eagle, Zara and Amazon. While some dresses may be extremely frilly and girly, and others more sophisticated and chic, it’s completely up to you what you want to wear. Remember, it is all about what makes YOU feel stylish and what brings out the best confidence in you.
Day Four: Preference Round
The preference round is one of the most important rounds throughout the whole process. Before the big reveal, this is your last chance to speak with the remaining sororities in your pool. It’s all about hyping yourself up and proving to them that you belong in this specific sisterhood and that you would make a great addition to their organization.
Since preference is the most formal and significant part of this whole journey, dressing your absolute best and saving your favorite outfit for last is critical for you to feel and do your best.
For this round, some of my favorite dress brands are Altar’d State, LoveShackFancy, Tobi, Reformation, Free People and Amazon. Since this is the fanciest round, it is definitely a day to dress to impress. Think of an outfit that you would wear to a wedding reception, a cocktail party or a black-tie event.
Some of my favorite dresses from these brands include the Gavina Linen Dress from Reformation, the Natasha Mini Dress from LoveShackFancy, this Dottie Dress from Altar’d State, and this satin dress from Amazon that comes in over 20 different colors.
And don’t forget to accessorize! Amazon has some of the best gold and silver jewelry that can help elevate any outfit you choose. Also, if you’re thinking of wearing some fancy shoes to go with the fit, check out brands like Steve Madden which have lots of sandals and heels to help you create your final look.
It’s all about picking an outfit that makes you feel the best and gives the sororities a chance to see who you are as a person — so choose well and good luck!
Day Five: Bid Day, Best Day!
After the long, tiring and grueling process of recruitment, the time has FINALLY come to celebrate bid day!
Bid day is arguably the most fun day out of the whole process – not only do you get to find your place in a sisterhood that reflects your values but it’s a day dedicated to celebrating and meeting your new, forever friends. When you receive a bid from the organization that wants you, you are immediately welcomed with open arms and gifts from your bid day buddies.
Sororities go ALL out when it comes to sticking to their theme, meaning decorations and attire must be perfectly executed for them to post pictures on their Instagrams. So knowing that this day will be photo-filled is extremely helpful.
After you run to your “forever home” or the house of your new organization, they will give you a shirt or crew neck with the greek letters of your sorority on it for you to represent proudly. To make sure your bid day posts are super cute, aesthetic pleasing, to die for or all of the above, definitely consider wearing cute print pants, denim shorts or a skirt that helps your bid day shirt stand out. Especially after a tiresome and “dressy” process, finally having a day where you can be comfortable and relaxed that the process is finally over is something you deserve!
To those who are pledging a sorority for the first time and are nervous about making a good impression, my best advice to you is to just be your authentic self!
Is that incredibly cheesy and obvious to say? The short answer is yes. However, I can’t tell you enough how important it is to be yourself and trust the process of recruitment. When I was going through recruitment, I was terrified of messing up or saying the wrong words. But as the rounds kept going and I opened up myself more and more each time, I truly found the place where I belong and I am so grateful that I got to meet my bestest friends through this process.
All in all, you’ll end up wherever you’re meant to be and knowing that you remained true to yourself AND looked good throughout the entire process will make the entire rush journey worth it!
What do you think about these sorority rush outfits? Which round of recruitment are you the most excited to style? Let us know in the comments below!