What is a rec?
A recommendation (rec) is a form that is completed by an alumna of a sorority to recommend a potential new member (PNM) to their sorority's house on our campus for formal recruitment. The alumna can download this form from her chapter's website, and will fill it out and send it in to the PO Box for the house on our campus, all of which are listed on the "Chapters" page of this site. Every PNM needs at least one rec for each of the 9 houses on campus. This means contacting at least 9 different women who were members of the particular sorority that we have on our campus to write her a recommendation.
Do we need a letter of support?
Many campuses require personally written letters from the alumna to accompany the sorority's official national recommendation form, but at Ole Miss, we do not. The women writing the recommendations are certainly welcome to provide a personally written letter to accompany the official form, but this is not required.
What do I need to give to my recommendation writers?
When you contact women to write your recommendations, you should provide them with your picture and a resume. Many women prefer that you correspond with them through the mail, in which case it would also be very courteous to also provide a stamped envelope that is already addressed to the chapter house on campus. You do not need to give them your transcript unless they specifically request it.
How many recommendations do I need?
You are only required to have one for each house, however, you may want to contact more than one woman per house to write you a recommendation in case one forgets, doesn't complete it in time, or it gets lost in the mail. Having a large number of recommendations will not change your standing in the house for recruitment, we merely suggest getting more as a means of ensuring that at least one will arrive to the house safely.
When are recommendations due?
We generally suggest that recommendations be sent in a month before recruitment in order to give the houses plenty of time to receive and process each recommendation.
What if I don't know an alumna from a sorority?
The first thing to always do is exhaust every possible option through your personal contacts. Ask any female family members, friends, teachers, etc. because oftentimes you will find out that there are people who are Greek and you didn't even know it! Even if you can't find a woman that you know personally to write your recommendation, ask your friends who are also going through recruitment who they got to write their recommendations, and contact these women to see if they would be willing to write one for you as well. If you still cannot find women to write your recommendations, there are a couple of other resources available:
For example, say you are from central Arkansas; you could search for "Little Rock panhellenic alumnae association", or "Little Rock ZZZ alumnae association" to find the sorority's specific alumnae association. If they have websites, they will often list their president or some might even have recommendation chairs who you may contact to ask about a recommendation.
Does my rec have to be from my hometown?
No. We generally recommend looking for alumnae associations near your hometown first because these chapters were established in large part to improve that sorority's standing in that community, and they should be very happy to do what they can to help a local woman become a part of their chapter. However, if you cannot find an alumnae association near you, feel free to contact Oxford, Memphis, or Jackson alumnae associations, as they are well-accustomed to writing recommendations for Ole Miss recruitment.
How do I know if the house has received my recommendation?
Unfortunately, there is not a system for the house to inform us or any potential new member of whether a recommendation has been received or not. This is why we believe that is a good idea to try and find more than one woman, if at all possible, to write your recommendation, just to make it more likely that at least one of them arrived safely. It is also a good idea to follow up with a thank you note to the woman writing the recommendation to perhaps remind her in case she has not completed it yet, and also just as good courtesy.
What if I only like a couple of houses, should I only get recommendations for them and not worry about the others?
NO. Our number one rule during recruitment is to keep an open mind. No matter how you feel about the sororities before recruitment, there is always the chance that you will meet a new person or find out something about the house that you never knew before that could change your mind. The vast majority of preconceptions that you may have about sororities are most likely false. It is almost impossible for you to know how you truly feel about the sorority before you even arrive on campus. Even if you are working on information received from someone else, always remember that this is your decision and that the sorority you choose will be the one that you spend the next 4 years in. Having said that, you should most definitely get a recommendation for all 9 houses on our campus. Even if it takes a little work to find an alumna to write the recommendation, that work could pay off if you realized that that sorority is the one that you truly wanted to be in. We would hate for you to miss out on the opportunity to be in the house that you belong in merely because you did not locate a recommendation. With such a large number of girls participating in recruitment, the process grows more competitive every year, and your first shot at maximizing your chances of being placed in a sorority is by getting recommendations for every house.
What happens if I absolutely cannot find anyone to write my recommendation for a particular house, or if a house never received my recommendations?
If a house does not have on record that you have sent a recommendation, you will still attend that house for the first round of recruitment, but there is a much greater chance that they will choose not to invite you to the second round of recruitment. This is why we strongly recommend using all of the methods described above to locate an alumna, in order to preserve your chances of being placed in the sorority of your choice.