On Sept. 19, students can expect a new sorority — Chi Omega — to join UR Greek life.
This new addition is in response to the overwhelming membership of the UR Panhellenic Association. According to Director of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs Monica Miranda Smalls, the main reason for bringing the new sorority to UR in the first place is to offset the number of students in each sorority and create a greater sense of a community between members.
Without the addition of Chi Omega, each UR chapter was anticipating between 80 and 100 new students to rush this year.
“[The chapters] don’t want to be that big,” Smalls said. “They want to stay between 50 and 60, so we sent notifications to 20 [sororities] to say that we’re open, and to please apply.”
Smalls is also the adviser for the new Chi Omega sorority and was directly involved in the eight-month long process of application, selection and presentation to finally decide on Chi Omega as the new chapter.
“Chi Omega was ultimately our choice because they have a very strong national organization – the second largest in the nation,” Susan Weir, vice president of Membership Recruitment of Panhellenic Association, said. “We felt [this] would benefit the new women in the chapter.”
To help with the recruitment process, staff members from the national Chi Omega headquarters will come to UR. Additionally, a consultant will be sent to stay on campus for a year in order to help the new sorority grow.
Chi Omega alumni — some local, some flying in — will also be helping out with the program.
According to Smalls, Chi Omega will start tabling to generate interest on Sept. 19, with several information and “get acquainted” sessions to follow. Finally, invitations to membership will be distributed on the evening of Sunday, Sept. 26, and the installation banquet will be held in December.
In bringing Chi Omega to UR, the hope is that the new sorority will offer something new and unique to UR Greek life.
Those in Chi Omega leadership positions also hope to recruit members who have never thought of joining a sorority before. They hope that new recruits will see this as an opportunity to be a part of starting something new on campus.
“You will have a hand in creating a part of UR history,” Senior Christine Pittman said.
Pittman also feels that joining a new sorority will give her the opportunity to meet many other women both connected with the sorority and throughout campus.
“We are excited to have them,” Smalls said. “We’ll have more women joining the community, and that’s always exciting for us.”