What are Letters of Recommendation or “Recs”?
Letters of Recommendation are now being referred to as “Letters of Information”. They are written by sorority alumnae to introduce a potential new member to the collegiate sisters of her sorority to help the collegiate members determine if the potential new member would be a good match for their chapter. While letters of recommendation are not required to participate in the recruitment process, they are common at most schools.
Why do I need a recommendation letter and how many do I need?
With so many women going through recruitment, recommendation letters provide the chapter members an opportunity to be introduced to a woman prior to the beginning of the formal recruitment process. It is suggested to provide one letter per sorority on your campus. Although it can help, a letter of information does not guarantee an invitation to events or membership. If there are some you cannot obtain, don’t be overly concerned. It is the responsibility of a sorority organization to handle that information if it is necessary for new membership. We encourage you to move forward with the recruitment process even if you have not secured letters of recommendation for all of the chapters on your campus. Most important is your recruitment experience and finding a place that you feel fits you best, regardless of your prior connections or recommendations.
How do I find someone to give me a recommendation letter?
First, ask the women you already know. Older relatives, neighbors, teachers, members of your local church or synagogue may be members of a sorority and you didn’t know it! Let them know that you will be going through recruitment in college and you would appreciate their providing a letter of information. Some other ideas include contacting women you have volunteered with, women you have worked with at a job, and your friends’ mothers. Even if the women you contact are not in a sorority themselves, they may know others who are.
What if I don’t have any friends or relatives who were in a sorority?
If you cannot find anyone in your local community who was a member of the sororities you will meet at formal recruitment, try inquiring with your local Panhellenic association. A list of alumnae Panhellenic associations can be found at www.npcwomen.org. It is in your best interest to get your letters from a Panhellenic closest to your hometown (eg, where you went to high school) whenever possible.
If you live in Georgia, the Atlanta Alumnae Panhellenic Association has volunteers from 20 of the 26 NPC sororities who are willing to be contacted to help with an introductory letter of information. If you would like to request our assistance, please complete and submit the form at the end of this page.
How do I ask someone for a recommendation letter, especially if I don’t know them?
- DO remember that you are asking these alumnae to introduce you to their sisters. Make your request with courtesy.
- DO make your request to each sorority alumna individually.
- DO make your request as soon as possible. Late spring/early summer is best for a fall recruitment. If you wait too long, your alumna may not have the time to write your introduction and may have to decline.
- DO provide your resume along with a current picture electronically. This makes it easier for an alumna to pass your information on with their introduction.
- DO return calls promptly if an alumna calls or requests more information.
- DO follow up with the alumna to confirm she sent a letter of recommendation on your behalf and to thank her for her time.
Once I find an alumna willing to write a recommendation letter, what do I do?
It is best to email them a prepared resume with a recent photo. Things to include in your resume would be:
- Your full name and contact information, both home and campus address (if known) and phone numbers
- Your parents names and address if different than yours
- Date of birth
- High school name and address
- High school honors/awards and activities
- Class rank
- SAT/ACT scores
- Jobs held
- Community activities
- List any Greek-affiliated members of your family, including fraternities
Is there somewhere I can find a sample of a recommendation letter?
No. This is a private correspondence between sisters and information letter formats are specific to each sorority. Every sorority handles references differently, and the use of the recommendations on individual campuses varies even within the same sorority. The alumnae you request letters from should contact their sorority headquarters for the most up to date guidelines. It is the responsibility of the alumna to obtain her sorority form, complete it and submit it according to her group’s requirements.
I’ve looked everywhere for sources for letters of recommendation and still can’t find one. Can the Atlanta Alumnae Panhellenic Association help me?
Yes, the Atlanta Alumnae Panhellenic Association has volunteers from 21 of the 26 NPC sororities who are willing to be contacted to help with an introductory letter of information after you have asked your community. The deadline for the University of Georgia will be August 1st. In order for us to forward your request to the appropriate recruitment contact of the sorority of your choice, please fill out the form. If you have additional questions, please contact the Atlanta Alumnae Panhellenic Association Vice President and Recruitment Chair, Angie Ahrens.