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News, commentary, criticism and praise for the College on the Hill, enlivened with history, culture and travel when we feel so moved.
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Prince Charming and the 340 Princesses
Dissappointment, the annual mistress of Sorority rush has risen its head once again here on the hill. The gnashing of teeth began soon after the revelation that 98 women had dropped out of fall rush leaving only 227 women with bids by the time it was over. While this did indeed result in only 67 percent of the women entering rush leaving with a bid, various theories were offered for lowest bid-rate in recent memory.
The Dartmouth’s editorial board weighed in on the subject Friday. In a surprising lack of tact, the editorial board lashed out at individuals they saw as being responsible for the Panhellenic Council’s “lack of accountability.” The board then proceeded to outline a process strikingly similar, as it was pointed out to me, to the current process, but which heisted some ideas from men’s rush. Essentially, every girl would be made to visit each house once, and then houses would “callback” girls. At this point girls could choose to visit whichever houses they wanted to, whether having been called back or not, and would then be allowed to “shakeout” to indicate their top choice for a house. At this point Sororities would offer a bid, no-bid or callback to each girl. Then the girls could use the remaining nights in rush to pursue bids at other houses.
Purely at face value this seems fairly logical and better than the old system. But being fairly inexperienced with the intricacies of women’s rush, I found myself chatting with friend who happened to be on the Panhellenic Council. She pointed out that this is effectively how girl’s rush works. Houses decide to callback or to no bid via their ranking system. If a girl is not invited back to a house she is “no-bid.” Under the proposed system girls who were set on a house would desperately go back to a house they did not receive a callback from and would end up wasting their time and the time of the disinterested sisters at the house rather than exploring other options as they currently do in rush. Additionally, we can all agree that sorority rush has its problems, but the problems are systemic of Dartmouth’s sorority system rather due to flaws in the rush process.
The real issue at hand is the tiered social standing of Dartmouth’s sororities. And this is one place where I do feel the Fraternities do contribute negatively to campus. The social ranking of the various sororities is at best superficial and at worst misogynist. Are we all really so concerned about only talking to pretty people or about hanging out with the “cool” houses that we shun those deemed as less attractive or awkward? It is behaviors and attitudes like this that contribute to sophomore women feeling pressured to join a particular house and believing that it is better to drop out of rush rather than go to a house that is less “desirable.” After all, my Panhellenic source claims that all the girls who participated in all the required nights of rush received bids somewhere.
This isn’t to say that women should feel pressured to join a house they don’t like. I only ask why there are such negative connotations tied to some houses, especially when most sororities do not host open parties. If more women entered rush with an open mind and chose houses based on the quality of the sisters rather than the reputation perhaps we would see more of a “success” rate in sorority rush.
August 14, 2013
Breaking: Of Crips and Bloods and Memories of Ghetto Parties
History repeats itself, first as tragedy and then as farce, or sometimes it just repeats itself. From the New York Times on November 30, 1998: At Dartmouth College, white students at a ”ghetto party” dressed…
June 25, 2013
Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson’s War on Students Part (2/2)
Part 1, Part 2 Today’s post again recounts the events that befell the Freshman. However, the content of the Hanover Police department report reproduced in this space yesterday is supplemented by information from my own…
October 18, 2009
When Love Beckoned in 52nd Street
We were at San Francisco’s BIX last evening, enjoying prosecco, cheese, and a bit of music. A full year of inhabitation in Northern California has unraveled to me no decent venue for proper lounging, but…
October 9, 2009
D Afraid of a Little Competish
So our colleague and Dartblog writer Joe Asch informed me that the D has rejected our cunning advertising campaign. Uh-oh. The Dartmouth is widely known as a breeding ground for instant New York Times successes,…
September 4, 2009
How Regents Should Reign
As Dartmouth alumni proceed through the legal hoops necessary to defuse a Board-packing plan—which put in unhappy desuetude an historic 1891 Agreement between alumni and the College guaranteeing a half-democratically-elected Board of Trustees—it strikes one…
August 29, 2009
Election Reform Study Committee
If you are an alum of the College on the Hill, you may have received a number of e-mails of late beseeching your input for a new arm of the College’s Alumni Control Apparatus called…
- The Dartmouth College Case
- 2007 Trustee Election
- Dartmouth Constitution
- Sunday Morning Sinatra
- The Indian Wars
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