Over 1,300 Cardinals participate in Fraternity and Sorority Life at Ball State, but for those considering joining, the process can seem confusing and intimidating at first. You might have questions such as “What exactly is FSL?” or “Why should I join?” This article is here to teach you more about specifically sorority life at Ball State, what the benefits are, and the process of joining.
What is it?
One of the first questions you might have is, “What is sorority life and what does it stand for?” Monet Lindstrand, a junior political science and gender studies major and president of the Panhellenic Association at Ball State, says, “At Ball State, it’s really focused on things like building social connections.” By being a part of a chapter, you get the opportunity to form new relationships, participate in many social events and even give back to the community around you. Adjusting to college life and living away from home for the first time can be scary and stressful, so this is a great way to establish a community and feel more at home at Ball State. You also learn how to build professional connections and how to hold yourself professionally outside of the classroom setting. On top of this, there are leadership opportunities, including being a member of your chapter’s executive board or being elected to the Panhellenic Association.
How to Join
Now that you know more about sorority life at Ball State, you’re probably wondering what the process of joining looks like. First, you should know that there are two types of recruitment: formal and informal.
Formal recruitment typically begins in September and is a five-day process from Wednesday to Sunday. Before recruitment begins, you register for recruitment, and you will then be put into a recruitment group. After this, you do introduction rounds, in which you meet with every chapter. The introduction round is spread out over the first two days of recruitment. Following this, you and the chapters make a mutual selection, in which you rank the chapters based on how interested you are in them, and the chapters do the same. This determines which chapters you will return to in the following days. Next is the involvement round, where you talk about what you’re involved with on campus, followed by the philanthropy round, where you discuss what kind of philanthropy work you’re interested in being involved with. The last part is the preference round, where you make your final decision on which chapter you join.
If formal recruitment isn’t your thing, there is also informal recruitment. During this process, some chapters host informal events like coffee dates. Instead of meeting with every chapter, you only meet with the ones you’re interested in, and you will be offered a bid if the chapter wishes to extend one. Informal recruitment happens just after formal recruitment in the fall and then again in the spring semester. This process is more casual and less time-consuming than formal recruitment, so if you’re a busy person or the idea of formal recruitment makes you nervous, this is a great option for you.
College can be a busy time. It’s likely that you’ll be juggling classes, a job, clubs, and other responsibilities. This might make you worried that you won’t have enough time to be a part of a sorority. You also might be wondering about how much it costs.
Keep in mind that costs will be higher for your first semester as a member and then will get lower in the following semesters. For the first semester, dues will be between $500 to $1,000. Following this, dues are typically $200 to $800 per semester. The cost varies by chapter, and you can learn about them during recruitment.
As for time, there are required events. However, usually attendance to social events is flexible if you cannot make it. When it comes to commitments, it is understood that academics always come first. “I’m super involved on campus, and my sorority has always been super flexible with me attending events and whatnot since the idea is that you want to go to these events,” says Lindstrand.
In addition to social events, there are also many philanthropy events. Each sorority chapter at Ball State represents a different philanthropy. Throughout the year, events are put on to raise money. While walking around campus, you might see a booth at the Scramble Light where a chapter is serving coffee or letting you pie a member in the face in exchange for a donation. Fraternities and sororities at Ball State have raised over $2.4 million for charity. This is an opportunity to be a part of something bigger than you and do great things for your community.
Throughout the year, there are many social events. These include siblinghood events, which often involve fun activities such as candle-making, painting and more. During these, you get to know the other chapter members better through events that aren’t rituals or chapter meetings. Chapters also host formals, mixers, athletic activities and other social activities throughout the year. There are also events which involve pairing with other chapters. For example, some sororities and fraternities will pair up to do a dance for Air Jam, Ball State’s annual lip-syncing competition.
- Delta Zeta
- Chi Omega
- Alpha Chi Omega
- Alpha Gamma Delta
- Alpha Omicron Pi
- Alpha Phi
- Kappa Delta
- Phi Mu
- Pi Betha Phi
- Sigma Kappa