Kappa Delta colonizes with about 90 members
Kappa Delta, Washington University’s newest sorority, added about 90 new members in its first recruitment last weekend, about twenty more than Alpha Omicron Phi added when it colonized four years ago, but well less than its target 160.
The sorority held its colonization from Jan. 25-27, recruiting new members through outreach efforts such as informal coffee dates.
While organizers of the group’s recruitment efforts aimed to fill KD to a similar capacity as other sororities, Greek Life officials suggested that a smaller number of founding members would make for a smoother transition and be better in the long-term.
“They could have taken up to 161 as their maximum, but realistically, we were telling them [that]…a good chapter size going into the fall semester is a little over 90 people,” Lucy Morlan, assistant director of student involvement & leadership, said. “From all indications, it was extremely successful.”
Senior Brooke Husic decided to join KD after her experience in Thurtene Honorary, and knowing other women in sororities.
“I was good friends with people who had really good experiences,” she said. “I just considered it something I had missed out on, and then I realized I had an opportunity not to miss out, so I looked into Kappa Delta.”
She said that the sorority did a good job of recruiting not only freshmen, the usual targets of sorority recruitment.
“There a lot of other seniors. I’m one of five people from the same freshman floor who ended up joining,” Husic said. “This was a good opportunity.”
Freshman Brittney Buckingham enjoyed being able to join a sorority without having to go through the formal recruitment process.
“I talked about it with upperclassmen friends who were in sororities, and they felt they were mostly being pressured into a predetermined atmosphere,” she said. “I liked the opportunity with KD of being able to start something new and create what I wanted out of it rather than falling in the path of someone else.”
“All the girls are really cohesive, and it’s just a really friendly, awesome group. And this is coming from a really big tomboy who surprised the hell out of her parents by saying, ‘Oh hey, by the way, I joined a sorority.’”
KD will be able to continue recruiting efforts through the spring semester.
Meanwhile, Morlan said that fraternity rush is progressing as normal despite fewer fraternities officially participating this semester. This year, about 450 men have registered for rush versus 500 last year, though she noted that the number includes a significant number of people who aren’t actually looking for bids.
Additional students may register in the next few days as some fraternities continue holding open events. Fraternities will then hold closed events, extend bids on Feb. 6 and give students two days to accept or decline the offer.
“I think there’s a perception…that because there are two less fraternities out there that there are less spaces,” Morlan said. “They don’t go into it thinking we’re going to take a new member class of 20 men.”
“It’s not really driven by numbers,” she added. “[It’s] typically driven by the men that they’re meeting.”
The sorority’s leadership development consultant was unable to provide comment.
With additional reporting by Alex Leichenger.