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Sharing Experiences: Greek Rush 2021

  • War Hawk girls at a booth during Greek Rush
  • Four guys at Greek Rush.
  • Girls in the parade at Greek Rush
  • Boy at a booth at Greek Rush.
  • Girls in costumes at Greek Rush.
  • Boys at a booth at Greek Rush.
  • Group of girls at Greek Rush.
  • Two girls at Greek Rush.
  • Group of boys with Epsilon Chi banner during Greek Rush parade..
  • Dr. and Mrs. Shoemaker in a car in the 2021 Greek Rush Parade.
  • Pastor Redlin in a car in the Greek Rush Parade..

One street, forty-eight collegians, and excitement that’s off the charts. Students weaved in and out between booths, sharing names and majors with collegian members, trying out a variety of games, and delving into carefully prepared treats. What else could this rambunctious event be but Panhellenic Greek Rush?

miya nakamura

After learning about this year’s plans for a traditional Greek Rush experience, Miya Nakamura (Sr., NC), president of the Beta Epsilon Bengals, couldn’t wait to get started. The experience allowed her time to get to know other officers and members. “This Greek Rush will be so special this year because it’s the first true Greek Rush experience for both the freshmen and sophomores,” said Miya. “Although preparing for Greek Rush could be slightly overwhelming at times, getting to spend time with the girls in my collegian as we got ready to meet new freshmen was so exciting and rewarding.”

When planning for Greek Rush, collegian officers are also setting the tone for the semester. Using their chosen theme, collegians set a goal to work toward and strengthen their friendships through the Four Pillars of Panhellenic: Unity, Academics, Leadership, and Service.

nj ignaco

“The theme for the Raiders is ‘Be Ready’ with our theme verse being 1 Peter 3:15,” said N.J. Ignaco (So., IL), vice president of the Delta Psi Raiders. “This leads to our goal for the semester—proving that wherever [we go] or whatever we do, we are servants for God and [should] be ready to reflect His likeness and spirit through our actions, words, and behavior. Not only that but [to also] be ready to give answers, testimonies, and hope to those who need it.”

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.

—1 Peter 3:15
debra dillman

The Zeta Alpha Leopards chose a jungle theme for the Greek Rush Parade and plan to focus on fellowship throughout the semester. “The goal for our collegian this year is to not only make our collegian bigger and better, but to focus on the fellowship with one another,” said Debra Dillman (Jr., VA), president of the Leopards. “We want the girls to be comfortable talking about what God has done in their lives and share those experiences with others.”

Sharing experiences started day one of collegian life—Greek Rush. Up and down Main Street, new students were met with lively and excited collegian members. Small groups of members marched up and down the street shouting chants and waving signs, eagerly sharing why new students should choose to join their collegian. Others were decked out in costumes and mascots, excitedly drawing attention and engagement to their booths. From popcorn and mini smoothies to hotdogs and canned sodas, many took advantage of the free treats available throughout the event.

michael donahue

After checking out a few booths, Michael Donahue (Fr., IN) appreciated the work each collegian made to be distinct. “A lot of them seem pretty knowledgeable about what their collegians do and so on, like their collegian’s different specialties, so that’s been something I’ve been impressed by,” he said. “It’s so much energy that I find myself being overwhelmed sometimes, but not in a bad way.”

College president Troy Shoemaker and his wife, Denise, started the parade in a Polaris Slingshot, a three-wheeled motorcycle, followed by Campus Church Pastor Jeff Redlin waving behind them in his own Slingshot. After Student Body president Bryan Paul (Jr., NC) led the way for the first float, students were treated to lively displays of collegian spirit! Each collegian was represented by a float or vehicle, and in the Sigma Delta Mustangs’ case, a live mustang! Student crowds enjoyed fire trucks and police vehicles and floats depicting anything from boxing matches to paper mâché creatures and creations. Some collegians even featured special guests, such as Dean Lee Ann Phillips with the Lambda Beta Jets and Dean Brad Phillips and Dr. Dale Adkins with the Delta Pi Kings.

junia privert

Collegians met together for Kickoff meetings the following Saturday evening. Delta Kappa Cavaliers member Junia Privert (Jr., FL) is looking forward to drawing closer together with fellow members, new and old. “I want to say the Cavaliers are the best because we include everybody,” she said. “Our collegian is trying to do a big sister, little sister thing, so I think that’ll be really interesting to do this year.”

christian kahnke

“The most enjoyable part [about collegian life] is the camaraderie, getting together with guys and being able to just have fun,” said Christian Kahnke (Jr., CT), Sigma Kappa Bulldogs chorister. “Even if you might not normally get to know these guys, it’s actually a cool opportunity to get to know a lot of different people.”

With Greek Rush and new member introductions out of the way, the future is full of possibilities! How will these collegian members forge new friendships and make unforgettable memories?