Rushing for me was extreme! Coming from little Norway I was so lost during the whole process; I even managed to sign up too late and almost had to miss the whole thing hadent it been for a white lie about the application not working (blabla) and a very sweet sorority girl who got me in.
I think that for international students rushing is something we only see on film and TV shows where everything is exaggerated and overdone. But I will tell you one thing: those hair-flipping overexcited blond, tan, white teeth sorority girls you see on TV they do all exist.
day 1: We went through registration which I almost missed since I hadent signed up. But there was a quick meeting about sorority, alcohol policy, security, etc. Then we were given groups and let to go.
day 2 to 4: We met in the groups we were assigned (i was group 13.. and what they call an Ad On because I registered late so I knew that non of the sorority had done any background check on me like they often do for girls they view as potential members). The first day we had three houses we had to talk to.
You stand with your group outside the sorority house and the girls in the sorority come out and sing and flip their hair for you. The hair flip looks kinda crazy and I was seriously concerned for their necks! But anayways, after some hairflipping you go into the house and one girl takes your hand and find a spot for you to sit down and have a talk. I had a normal conversations (Miley cyrus and the summer was hot topics) with all the girls i spoke to during the three days of conversations but some girls are also asked about their community service hours and very formal stuff.
We had three days of conversation days. I remember it being ridiculously hot outside so a few girls fainted during the 5 hours a day you run around from house to house all dressed up in heels and cute outfits. You barely had time to eat between the houses as they where all scheduled to be only 10 minutes apart and some houses where running late so you had to run for the next one in your heels and all.
I very quickly had my favorites which was Kappa, DG, Alpha Phi and Pi Phi. I think I liked them because the conversation went smoother and I got the feeling they wanted me.
After the last conversation day you have to run back to you group leader and pick 7 of your top houses. Then the next day you have to wake up early and meet up with your group leader which hands you a little piece of colored paper with those houses who invited you back for house tour. If one of the seven houses you chose the day before drops you because they did not believe you would fit in you will be invited back into one of the other houses that listed you. I got all the houses I listed, but I was most excited to see all my top 4 there.
Day 5: Day five is house tours which means that you are invited back into the house and are allowed to see other parts of the house than you saw the first day. These days felt even hotter and I actually ran home during my one hour break to shower (!) and redo my make up. House tours are more fun than conversation days as you get to see the house.
First there are some more hairflipping by the sorority girls before you go in in alphabetical order (this is because they had matched you up with someone). I remember most of the girls that gave me house tours was international students aswell because they want to match you up with someone they believe you would like. A lot of the girls I met during house tours are still girls I hang out with today so they do a good job on matching you!
After day 5 you rush back to your group leader who asks you to choose your top 4. At this point my favorites where Kappa, DG, ADPi (mostly because my roommate is in this house), and Pi Phi.
Day 6: This is slideshow day, but first you have to meet up with your group leader to see which houses invited you back. At this point I was so nervous that I barely managed to look a my little pink peace of paper, but also this time I got all the houses I wanted!
I had my first house at 11 so I went back for a few more hours of sleep. Then I met up with my groups. Again it was dripping hot outside! A few girls fainted and I felt dizzy myself at a point because sometimes some of the sororities are a bit behind schedule so you therefore have to stand outside all dressed up, super stressed in the burning sun and wait for them to come out and get you.
During Slideshow day you get to see a slideshow or video of fun events the sorority have done. Its a way for them to show you that they are all nice, fun and cute girls. Slideshow days are less stressful as you get to sit down the entire time while watching a short little video, hear the girls sing and you even get food and drinks.
Then end of the day you meet up with your group adviser for the last time to choose your top two. I had to call my roommate and let her know I would be dropping her house. I really wanted to be in a house with her, but I quickly got the feeling that her house was not for me, and I also felt that the other houses wanted me more. So this time I choose Kappa and DG.
day 7: same process as before, you wake up early and meet up with your advisers to get to know which houses you got. It took me a few minutes to gather up the courage to even look at my slip. It is incridible how invested you get into this. You try so hard to make the houses you want like you and not getting invited back can feel like such a stab in the heart, almost like a breakup. Coming in as a international student it was totally unexpected for me that I would care this much about getting the houses I wanted. I luckily again was invited back to my top houses.
day seven is preference day (because this is your preference houses). This is the more formal part of the recruitment process and you have to dress up very nice in heels and cocktail dresses. They have one girl from each house come out and walk you in. You get to sit down for a little meal while they have speeches, performances and entertainment for you. To me this part was a bit extreme as one of my top houses literally looked like they were having a wedding! The houses was decorated beautifully and everything was planned down to the very last details with food and everything.
Right after this you have to stand in line to electronically select your number 1 choice. There was maybe 100 girls in line when I got there as almost 700 girls are rushing! I choose DG as my first because it was a house that I really liked from the beginning and I felt I got really well along with the girls!
Evening day 7: this is when you get to find out which house you got into. All the sororities pick around 70 girls out of 1000 potential members so the competition is hard! At USC you meet up in the evening with your group members in jeans and a white shirt. At the same time you are handed a bid card which says which house you got into. Every girl around me would turn their card and start screaming, while some girls seemed less happy as they might not have gotten their top choice. This was perhaps the peak of my nervousness during rush. I started at the back of my card to gather up the courage to have a look. One of my group leaders looked at me and smiled: “You will be happy” she said, and I knew at that moment I had gotten into DG so I turned the card quickly and with proud letters it said: Welcome to Delta Gamma! I screamed! I felt so ridicules! But also so incredible happy!
After finding out which house you get into we at USC do the House Run where you run from campus to the row where your new sorority is. A long the way fraternity boys (which you have not been allowed to speak to during rush) have gathered to welcome the new girls. Its looks insane as 700 overly excited girls run all sweaty toward their house.
At DG I had all my new sisters waiting for me with gifts and hugs, and it felt great to meet all of them and finally know that the week of rush hell was over!