Sororities at MIT — Come as You Are

Stories From Greek Women on Campus

Come as you are. Sororities at MIT are about finding a place where you feel comfortable as an individual as well as feel supported as part of the community. Each sorority on campus has a distinct personality, yet all were founded on similar values and as a support system for women at MIT. Many have found a strong community with their sorority, and that experience has made all the difference in their lives at MIT. Below are a number of tales straight from Greek women on campus:

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“I had tried a lot at MIT so far, and I figured that joining a sorority was the least likely thing I could do. As soon as I got my bid from my sorority, I knew that it was the family I had been missing while my own family was far away. I had someone to turn to when I was having a bad day; psets were still impossible but I had someone to stay up with me until we got some sort of answer; friends were never too far away when walking down the infinite meant seeing a sea of greek letters. At MIT we’re often caught up with how little and insignificant we are — being a part of such a powerful women’s organization changed all that for me. For the first time since I walked into class as a little freshman, I was part of my own sisterhood and community.

I never felt that so strongly as when my sisters supported me in the most important aspect of my life. As a freshman, I organized a national Brain Tumor 5K in Washington DC. I was the volunteer coordinator and had been having a hard time getting people to sign up. So I sent an e-mail to my chapter asking if anyone would like to come with my family and me to DC and volunteer for the run. Immediately I had sisters signing up, and a few weeks later my dad rented a large van and took me and a group of my sorority sisters the eight hours to Washington DC. They supported me when things did not go as planned, and filled in gaps in the volunteers where I needed more help. After the run, I had people coming up to me saying that these women, my sisters, had changed their perceptions of sorority women and that they were so incredibly impressed.

After that weekend, I knew that not only was I a part of a sorority, I was part of a group of women who were powerful mind-changing supportive sisters. They made me want to be a Recruitment Counselor, because I know if I found something so incredibly powerful, other women can find that too.”

—Cheryl M. Kwinn ’09

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“In high school, joining a sorority was never my idea of fun. Surprisingly, I never knew that MIT had sororities before freshman orientation when my roommate mentioned them to me. She already had her mind set on joining, and I was still unconvinced that they would improve my social life in any real way.

When I returned to my dorm after my first night of recruitment, I was surprisingly excited about the prospect of joining a sorority. All of the women were intelligent, friendly, and impressive, and I began to see them not as people who would dictate my social life, but a group of people who would be a good resource at MIT.

Perhaps the best part about being in a sorority is the fact that all of the women make me laugh. They are wonderful hysterical people who are smart and dedicated to their work, but also take time to laugh. And through four years of laughs, they find themselves, become adults, and learn that life is nothing without friendship and loyalty.

—S. Campbell Proehl ’09

S. Campbell Proehl is a Tech Campus Life columnist.

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“I didn’t believe in paying for my friends and that was why I didn’t go through Recruitment my freshman year at MIT. I thought that I was extroverted enough to find friends on my own. I ruled out the possibility of joining a sorority without a real basis for my reasons. It wasn’t until sophomore year that I realized that surviving MIT was more difficult than I had thought.

MIT is such a busy place. It was so easy to get lost in the cracks, overload myself with work, and forget to eat several times. The few people who were really close to me started getting busier and delved into different studies as sophomore year approached.

After much thought, I decided to go through Recruitment my sophomore year ­­— the idea of making an educated decision about sororities wouldn’t hurt anyone. I have met so many amazing girls, and they have been there for me when I received all my bad test grades or made sure that I had a proper dinner in my stomach or consoled me when I couldn’t speak to anyone about my Grandmother’s death. I am really thankful for them and they have made my MIT experience more memorable and when I look back, I think of the fun times, the laughter, and the love we share for one another.

I honestly regret joining a year late. To me, that meant missing out on one more wonderful year with the best girls in the world — no one should pass up on that opportunity!”

Jennifer Tang ’09

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We encourage you to do the same as these inspiring women who were once in your shoes. Come to recruitment as you are. It’s perfectly okay to just come and look around!

Yicong Liu ’09 is the Panhellenic Association Vice President of Recruitment.