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Business fraternities hold first in-person recruitment since pandemic

<p>Business fraternities begin their first in-person recruitment since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.</p>

Business fraternities begin their first in-person recruitment since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last semester, Alexa Bolena, senior vice president of Delta Sigma Pi, was stressfully organizing online recruitment for the future brothers of the business fraternity. She frantically learned everything she possibly could about Zoom, yet experienced a week filled with technical issues, unnatural conversations and fewer students rushing.

This semester, Bolena is organizing her second recruitment for Delta Sigma Pi, along with four other business fraternities, making it one of the largest in-person events since the pandemic began. 

“Covid showed us that we’re all on the same team,” Bolena said. “We want to get as many people as we can, and I’m very happy to be doing it [recruitment].” 

This year’s recruitment process kicked off on Aug. 31 with the annual Meet the B-Orgs event.

Michelle Thomas, director of student organizations and diversity in the Farmer School of Business, said the event had a good turnout despite the pandemic. 

“At Meet the Business Orgs, we had over 400 students come to that event, so to me that signals that students want to get involved,”  Thomas said. “Students want to hit the ground running with relationships and building those networks.”

This year, Delta Sigma Pi had the most recruits they’ve ever had.

“We have 120% more recruits compared to the spring semester,” Bolena said. “I think because of the pandemic, people lost their sense of connection at Miami, and the business fraternities and even all the B-Orgs are a great way to build that connection.”

Taylor Hellmann, vice president of recruitment for Alpha Kappa Psi, has also seen an increase in the number of recruits and says in-person recruitment has helped with that.

“This semester it’s been easier to spread the word about info nights and stuff like that,” Hellmann said. “We’ve had tabling events in Farmer. We’ve had people go into freshman classrooms and talk about AKPsi, so it’s been way easier.”

The Farmer School of Business decided it was safe to hold recruitment in-person since Mega Fair was successful and most classes are held in-person.

To follow social distancing guidelines, the tables at Meet the B-Orgs were six feet apart and spread across Farmer’s first floor and lower level. 

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In addition to distancing, hand sanitizer was placed on each table, and only a few papers were passed out. QR codes were primarily used so students could sign up on their own phones for organizations. Everyone at the event had to wear a mask as well.

There was also a virtual option for rushing a business fraternity for students in quarantine.

“We had our first round interviews yesterday, and there is a group of people who have COVID, so we offered them a virtual option,” Hellmann said. “Students aren’t cut just because they are sick.”

Recruitment wraps up Sept. 26 with Bid Day, when students will hear about their decision. As recruitment finishes, it poses the potential that other clubs and organizations will also return to in-person events.

“I think other organizations are hesitant and still figuring things out, but with Meet the B-Orgs, it was a huge game-changer because so many people were together,” Bolena said. “I think it’s really encouraging to show that even though we’re not fully back to normal, we can still do big stuff like this and be successful doing it.”