Bid war Wracks Campus Sororities

    Two weeks after sorority recruitment, questions still linger about computer glitches, “”misbids”” and the resignation of Panhellenic Council President Megan Christopher that followed shortly after.

    The Panhellenic Council had many new experiences this year, most notably a record number of girls rushing. According to Greek Life Adviser Jennifer Martinson, the number reached over 500 — nearly double the previous year.

    While the large number of rushees yielded more girls receiving bids, according to Martinson, the influx of participants may have also amplified problems, according to John Muir College senior and Alpha Chi Omega President Melissa Bargman.

    However, there was uncertainty as to how the recruitment process was being run, according to Eleanor Roosevelt College senior and Alpha Chi Omega member Emily Sullivan.

    “While [recruitment] was happening, there were a lot of unanswered questions,” she said.

    The largest question involved women receiving “misbids,” or acceptances into the wrong sororities — a situation that affected 40 to 50 girls and impacted every sorority, Revelle College senior and Alpha Chi Omega member Rachel Corell said.

    In response to mismatching, the Panhellenic Council held an “emergency” meeting after bid day to correct the problem, according to a councilmember who wished to remain anonymous due to the confidentiality of the meeting.

    Sigma Kappa member Christopher denied such a meeting.

    “[The councilmember doesn’t] know what [she] is talking about,” Christopher said.

    Martinson confirmed the occurrence of the meeting, however, but said that the term “emergency” referred to its timing rather than alerting people.

    While at the initial meeting, the council blamed the mismatching on “computer glitches,” according to Sullivan. Martinson later reported that misbids were due to a “human error” on her part.

    According to two bylaws of the panhellenic constitution, all seniors and two juniors can be accepted into each sorority without being included in their specified quotas.

    This year, chapters were instructed to make a separate list of their non-quota juniors and seniors so they could be manually matched, Bargman said.

    Martinson claimed that she failed to perform this process, causing some of the girls to receive their second choices — even though their first choices accepted them — and filling slots that weren’t designated to them.

    The purpose of the meeting was to give sororities another chance to offer bids to rushees whose spots had been filled mistakenly, according to Martinson; therefore, the council allowed chapters to pick two additonal girls off a list of withdrawals — girls who ultimately did not complete the recruitment process — in order alleviate the discrepency.

    Although the bylaws had been disobeyed and several women received the wrong matches, the council didn’t want to decrease morale by investigating the matter further, Martinson said.

    “Most people were happy with the bids and we didn’t want to make people that were happy unhappy,” she said.

    She reported that five situations were adjusted, with each being addressed on a case-by-case basis.

    Other members of the executive board refused to comment.

    While this story may explain mismatched juniors and seniors, it does not account for underclassmen who received the wrong offers. According to Bargman, there was a sophomore who switched from Chi Omega to Delta Gamma after bid day because of a mismatch.

    When questioned about the specific example, Martinson claimed that she was unaware of the girl’s grade level.

    “At this point, we didn’t have any way to confirm grade levels,” she said. “They were self-reported. It was my understanding that [this student] was not a sophomore.”

    Another example involved Thurgood Marshall College freshman Chrissy Morris, who received the wrong bid from Kappa Alpha Theta when her first choice was Pi Beta Phi.

    She called the executive board hypocritical for claiming that there was one sorority meant for each girl — and then leaving the majority of mismatches uncorrected.

    The dramatic finale to the recruitment process was Christopher’s resignation, which she attributed to a lack of time and not to recruitment issues.

    While Martinson and Christopher said they were certain that they rectified the issues, Corell said there still may be consequences for the future.

    “Knowing the system is flawed is going to really hurt us next year,” she said. “Getting put in the wrong house is a big issue and each year these problems happen, people trust panhellenic less and less.”

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