Brothers old and new filled Murray State’s Quad with shouts and cheers, and welcomed more than 100 new members to Greek Life Monday afternoon.
A mix of incoming freshmen, upperclassmen and transfer students received bids to the nine Interfraternity Council, or IFC, chapters, with a high level of student interest in this year’s recruitment week.
The numbers ranged for each fraternity, reaching as high as 29 new members for Pi Kappa Alpha and Alpha Sigma Phi and as low as five new members for Phi Kappa Tau.
Senior Brandon Johnson, internal vice president for the IFC, said there is not a minimum requirement to how many new members are required for recruitment week.
Thomas Williams, junior from Belleville, Ill., was one of the 14 new members for Sigma Pi after developing a relationship with brothers in the fraternity during the two years prior to recruitment week.
“I wanted to be Greek for a while,” Williams said. “I knew a lot of the people who were already Sigma Pi, so I just decided to go for it.”
But for Jeremy Triggs, freshman from Memphis, Tenn., he decided to drop from recruitment week because of the financial requirements.
“My aunt didn’t want me to get a job my first semester,” he said. “But for me to pledge, I would need a job in order to put in the funds to support my brotherhood.”
Triggs said since he could not get a job, he thought it best not to put himself in a financial bind. Triggs said if it weren’t for his inability to get a job, he would have this fall, but hopes to go through recruitment in the future.
He said all of the men were great, and despite not becoming a new member, he still developed strong relationships with the brothers and enjoyed the experience.
Kendall Harris, interim coordinator of Greek Life and Leadership Programs, said the overall experience was amazing, with excitement from all participants.
“The PNM’s (potential new members) had a blast and were very excited to participate in fall rush, and the active brothers within each fraternity left a good and lasting impression on the PNM’s,” Harris said.
However, this year’s recruitment experienced a few changes, such as the bid day celebrations happening on the steps of Lovett as opposed to inside, where it has been held in previous years.
James Andrew Urquhart of Sigma Pi, senior from Lexington, Ky., said an outside event makes a definite difference.
“It get’s hot and cramped inside so being out there you have better access and a better turnout, I think,” he said. The fraternities also held recruitment a week later than usual, and Johnson said the decision came from the overall agreement by chapter representatives and the IFC executive board.
He said the fraternities were able to post fliers around campus and promote registration on social media.
“It gave us more time to recruit and get guys to come out and give it a chance,” Johnson said.
Johnson said IFC aimed for the potential new members to be recognized with their fraternities, as opposed to being accepted in one group.
Corey Tucker of Sigma Phi Epsilon, senior from Hardinsville, Ky., said he thought the new process made the Bid Day slower.
“I like the fact that it’s outside but it doesn’t seem to be well organized,” Tucker said. “Last year they put everyone who accepted a bid in a group together and it was one and done. I do like it this way, but for some reason it’s going a lot slower.”
With the introduction of new procedures, received positively and negatively in the fraternity community, Harris said the Greek Life office is still committed to developing a supportive community.
“I am so thrilled and very excited for this year in Greek Life,” Harris said. “Remember, it’s not just for four years, it’s for life.”
Story by Mary Bradley, Assistant News Editor