Seven hundred and seventy six women returned to Ithaca early last month for sorority recruitment — which officially ended with bid night Jan. 26 — according to Katherine-Rae Cianciotto, assistant dean of students.
The number of women who participated in recruitment this year remained virtually the same as last year, with only a five-person increase, she said.
However, this year’s recruitment numbers reveal a continuing trend of decreased participation in sorority rush. Last year, around 100 fewer women partook in recruitment than the year prior, when there were 871 rushees.
Although the number of participants remained roughly the same, the number of registrants who received bids also decreased from 75 percent last year to 69 percent of rush participants receiving bids.
According to Veronica D’agostino ’15, the head of recruitment of Phi Sigma Sigma, last year, during the recruitment cycle of 2014, each sorority had to accept a minimum of around 55 new members, The Sun previously reported. However, this year, Maple Chen ’17, vice president of recruitment of Membership of Kappa Delta, said “as far I know, quota — the maximum number determined by Panhellenic — was 43.”
Rachel Baer ’17, vice president of recruitment for Kappa Alpha Theta, said the 2016 pledge class for her sorority was also 43 members, but she called this number “approximately the same as last year.”
Some houses’ gradual change to a smaller class size can have a positive effect on members, creating a more intimate group of girls and a closer community, according to Baer.
“There’s no real negative effect on sororities because of differing class sizes,” Baer said. “A big plus is that it’s much more likely that all the new members can live in the house.”
The number of new members of fraternities is not completely set in stone either, according to Blake Brown ’17, Interfraternity Council president.
“As of now, 503 new members have signed bids to join an IFC fraternity,” Brown said. “However, nine fraternities are participating in second round recruitment, so we are expecting that number to rise in the coming week.”
He added that that “the numbers [of new member recruits in fraternities] have generally remained the same” from one year to the next.