Rush figures may fall short of last year

Joseph DeMartino

Preliminary numbers released by officials may show a drop in recruitment for Northwestern’s Greek community during this year’s winter Rush.

Fraternity recruitment numbers hovered near 300 men, while sorority recruitment numbers fell short of the 600 women who originally signed up for Rush — although officials do not yet know by how much.

Associate Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life Kyle Pendleton declined to comment until the final statistics came out, citing typical changes in numbers resulting from people accepting or rejecting bids late.

At least four fraternities posted preliminary numbers in the single digits, according to an e-mail from the Interfraternity Council. Alpha Epsilon Pi had a preliminary recruitment class of four.

Eric Farbman, Alpha Epsilon Pi president, did not return repeated phone calls.

However, some fraternities posted solid recruitment totals — even if they faced extenuating circumstances.

Sigma Phi Epsilon had a strong class of 32 men accept bids, according to Nick Johnson, a member of Sig Ep who was president during Rush.

“When we go into Rush, we’re not really going for a quota,” Johnson said. “As long as we get quality guys, we’ll let them in.”

Despite a suspension for the first half of Rush due to an alcohol violation Fall Quarter, Phi Kappa Psi posted a recruitment class of 16 men, according to Justin Reif, Phi Psi president.

“The university decided it was best to institute some kind of limit on Rush for us,” Reif said. “We felt that we had picked up some guys Fall Quarter, and we just had to keep them informed. They knew our suspension wasn’t going to last.”

Final sorority recruitment numbers were also unavailable. However, pledge class quotas, the maximum number of women a sorority could give bids to, dropped from 39 to 35 women, Pendleton told The Daily last week.

Pendleton said the percentage of women who received bids did not drop, and more chapters met their quotas this year than last.

He also said the new online registration method “inflated” recruitment numbers because of its simplicity.

“It was really easy for a woman just to sit down at her computer and register for recruitment and not show up,” he said.

Weinberg freshman Julia Fedor dropped out of Rush after the fourth day.

“Basically, I got down to three houses on Sunday and I couldn’t see myself in them,” Fedor said.

She said she knew “a lot of girls” from her recruitment class and her dorm who dropped out.

“Some girls,” Fedor said, “had their heart set on a particular house.”

The Daily’s Tina Peng and Sheila Burt contributed to this story.

Reach Joseph DeMartino at [email protected].