8 Oddities of Sorority Life

Martha Nerio , Contributing Writer

Joining a sorority on campus is a great way to network, volunteer and raise money for the organization’s philanthropic efforts. When sororities recruit, they enumerate the benefits of joining a sorority.

What they don’t tell you right away is all activities you’ll be doing that most people would not find normal. But UT has your back: We spoke with Panhellenic Vice President Sandra Garcia, who filled us in on some strange sorority behavior on the Cal State L.A. campus.

  1. Not only is everyone in your sorority your “sister,” but you effectively get assigned buddies: You get a “big” and a “little” – two sisters who share similarities with you and often become your best friends in the sorority.
  2. If you hate working out, you will hate what sorority girls call a sorority squat. Yes, an actual squat.

“Getting ready for a picture changes when you join a sorority,” Garcia said. All the tall girls stand in the back while everyone else squats and poses in the front.

  1. Throwing up signs is yet another thing sorority girls do. Oh, you traveled and took a picture throwing your sign up? This is totally normal when in a sorority because you are taking it with you and representing.
  2. Dress codes are very important to a sorority because almost every event will have one.  For instance, Delta Phi Epsilon’s “ritual” dress code – which governs what’s worn on special occasions – is all black while Delta Zeta’s is White.
  3. Then, each sorority has its own chant and will randomly sing out loud for all to hear and possibly get stuck in their heads.
  4. Paddles are used — not in a boat — but to decorate with the sorority’s letters and as a canvas. This is used as a gift to one of your sisters.
  5. The recruitment process has a lot of regulations but what is crazy is that potential new members must get a “bid.” A bid is like a pass, an invitation, a sign that the sorority liked you enough to want you in their sorority.
  6. Once you join, you do a “ritual.” This is where sorority girls gather around in a circle in all black and recite certain things to finalize the new members.

If these oddities haven’t scared you away, you are encouraged to check out any of the XYZ sororities on campus: They are all in heavy recruitment mode.


For full disclosure, Martha Nerio is in a sorority, Delta Phi Epsilon.