Panhel Selects Three Finalists In Search for Extra Sorority at MIT

The MIT Panhellenic Association chose three sororities out of eleven that applied as finalists in the selection process for a sixth sorority at MIT. National representatives of Delta Delta Delta, Kappa Kappa Gamma, and Pi Beta Phi were invited to present at MIT in April, according to Tiffany W. Guo ’09, Panhel president.

National representatives of the new sorority are expected to begin informal recruitment next fall after MIT’s five other sororities, including Alpha Epsilon Phi, participate in formal recruitment, Guo said. According to Guo, the new sorority will begin recruiting after the others because it will have no existing MIT members to participate in formal recruitment.

Adding a sorority does not necessarily require a formal call for applications like the one currently in progress. Panhel is going through this process because “we have such high numbers” in the existing sororities, said to Guo. She said that a new sorority would “alleviate” that problem, ensuring that all interested women are able to join a sorority.

According to Guo, it would still be possible for a group of interested girls to form a new sorority and apply for membership in Panhel outside of a formal call for applications, but membership numbers in MIT’s current sororities have caused Panhel to actively search out a new sorority.

The new sorority will “most likely not” have a house in its first year, said Guo. She also said that housing for sororities would be distributed “in order of the time that [the sororities] came to MIT.” So, AEPhi, the smallest of MIT’s sororities, would have priority over the new sorority if both requested housing.

The new sorority is being selected by the Panhel extension committee, which is comprised of a representative from each sorority; Guo, the Panhel president; Yicong Liu ’09, the Panhel vice president of recruitment; Lauren E. Wojtkun, Panhel advisor and Assistant Director of Fraternities, Sororities, and Independent Living Groups; and a representative from the Association of Independent Living Groups.

The extension committee was formed shortly after Panhel members voted to approve the search for a new sorority late last semester. In early January, the National Panhellenic Conference was contacted with a letter requesting applications, and interested sororities visited with Wojtkun in late January.

The finalists were selected last Monday, using six criteria: alumnae support, headquarters support, new member program, member development, risk management, and service and philanthropy, according to Guo.

National representatives of the three sororities will come to MIT in mid-to-late April to present to the MIT Greek community. Guo said that the final sorority will be selected by early May.

AEPhi was the most recent sorority to be added to campus. In 1993, nine undergraduate women and several representatives of the national sorority made a presentation to Panhel requesting membership; MIT’s colony of AEPhi was accepted by Panhel later in that year.