Indiana Daily Student

IU sororities conduct entirely virtual bid night for new recruits during pandemic

<p>Members of IU sororities join a Zoom call for Bid Night Feb. 14. Bid Night was virtual this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.</p>

Members of IU sororities join a Zoom call for Bid Night Feb. 14. Bid Night was virtual this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

IU sororities conducted Bid Night for their new members Feb. 14 entirely virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Bid Night is typically held at the IU Tennis Center, where all new members gather to find out which sorority they are invited to join. 

The IU Panhellenic Association made all recruitment events virtual to keep all sorority members and new recruits safe from COVID-19, according to the Panhellenic Association.

The night began with new members joining a Zoom call with their Rho Gammas, who are student recruitment leaders in the Panhellenic Association. 

Senior Jamie Mendoza and freshman Rachel Vose chat with IDS reporter Sophie Suter about how bid night and sorority recruitment functioned virtually this year. Reported by: Sophie Suter Edited by: Zack Berger Musc: Audionautix

Each Zoom call had about 50 people, and there were about 1,100 to 1,200 new members in total. The new members watched a video from the IU Panhellenic recruitment team congratulating them on completing the recruitment process. After the video, Rho Gammas sent each recruit an email with their bid. Once the new members got this email, they joined a new Zoom meeting with the sorority chapter they were invited to join.

Jamie Mendoza, a director of Rho Gammas, said she thought the night was successful and went very smoothly, considering it was the first time it was held entirely online. She said it was particularly beneficial to freshmen.

“They're living in dorms, they haven't had a lot of social interaction for a semester, because you know, it's kind of harder to like go out and meet people with COVID and everything,” Mendoza said. “So I've heard they really enjoyed even just getting to talk to people.”

KK Schmitzer, recruitment chair for Sigma Kappa, said her sorority chapter enjoyed the virtual event. The Panhellenic Association at IU required all sorority chapters have their events online, and Schmitzer said this was a positive decision because it would keep everyone safe from the coronavirus.

“I think our whole sorority enjoyed it as well,” Schmitzer said. “I think even though it was different and it wasn't the same as meeting someone in person, we still got to show them a lot about our sisterhood and sorority in that virtual environment, which I thought was awesome.”

Freshman Rachel Vose was one of the new members who participated in virtual bid night. Her sorority chapter bid was from Delta Phi Epsilon, and she said she was really impressed with the bid night experience and enjoyed being a part of it.

“I'm just so proud of PHA and Delta Phi Epsilon for all of their efforts,” Vose said. “I think it was really memorable and incredible to see how they took this challenge and still made it possible.”

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