Tech students interested in participating in the Greek system had a chance to get to know Spring Rush and tour the various fraternities on Tech campus from Monday Jan. 12 to Thursday Jan. 15.
David Fendig, chair of Spring Rush and vice president of recruitment, said that while not every fraternity participates 28 of the 31 fraternities were involved in the activities.
While some campus sororities have their own recruiting drive, most sororities recruit in the fall only. The Interfraternity Council (IFC) operates Spring Rush so the term refers exclusively to fraternity recruitment.
The number of fraternities participating is an increase from eight years ago when only half the fraternities were involved. This year, more students attended Rush compared to last year.
“[We broke] last year’s number,” Fendig said. “[We had] a high volume of traffic than from past years.”
While the IFC does not provide definitive records of the total number of people who pass through each fraternity during the week, there were 140 new pledges this spring, compared to only 100 pledges last year. Also for the first time in four years, two fraternities managed to bring in double-digit pledges.
The biggest discrepancy between rushing in the fall and spring is the number of students involved. During Fall Rush, the number of students going through each fraternity house averages anywhere from two hundred to three hundred per night, and the average pledge class sizes are around sixteen members.
Spring Rush sees a much smaller number however, with ten to twenty people visiting per night and pledges classes coming in at around four members.
Recruitment numbers fluctuate and there does not appear to be any identifiable trend. The recent economic problems facing our country did not affect the number of attendees either as evidenced by the larger turnout this year. Additionally, the rain that sprouted up during the past four years did not hamper this year’s Spring Rush.
Another reason given by Fendig for the amount of people who decided to rush in the spring and not the fall was the uncertainty of rushing so early.
“[Students] were unsure about school and so they wanted to see if they can handle the work loads at Tech before pledging,” Fendig said.
He said that fraternities provide tutoring and teach time management skills for students who are unsure about the time commitment demand by Greek life.
The Rush activities in the spring are informal like their fall counterparts. Students tour fraternities, sample foods and meet brothers. Fendig said that one advantage of rushing in the spring is that due to the lower volume of traffic.
According to Fendig, fraternity members and touring students are better able to “make a connection and get to know each other” in the Spring Rush environment.
“During fall brothers might not be able to meet everyone who goes through, but in spring they will be able to,” Fendig said.