Members of the Lehigh chapter of Gamma Phi Beta pose for a photo in the Rauch Business Center on Friday, Sept. 20, 2019. The Panhel Preview, held by the Lehigh Panhellenic Council, allowed sorority chapters to give presentations about their respective houses to interested students. (May Naish/B&W Staff)

Panhel Preview aims to increase student participation in Greek life

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The Lehigh Panhellenic Council held its first Panhel Preview event on Sept. 20 to close Panhellenic Pride Week.

Taryn Dunlavey, ‘20, vice president of internal recruitment for Panhellenic, said this event was an opportunity for potential new members to learn more about the chapters and understand the recruitment process.

Panhel Preview replaces the Meet and Greet events that have been held in previous years.

“We knew that it would get people’s attention and accommodate to more of what we were hearing,” Dunlavey said.

The event was held in Rauch Business Center. Each sorority chapter had its own room in which to meet potential new members.

During the old Meet and Greet events, sororities were assigned to different academic buildings or met potential new members in chapter houses, which added additional time to the event because participants had to travel between buildings.

Joy Zhong, ‘20, vice president of external recruitment for Panhellenic, said each sorority had a chance to show a small presentation, video, skit or song during each rotation and speak to potential new members.

“We wanted this to be geared more towards the potential new members and their experience, and hopefully ,they would get something more out of it than just talking to a bunch of chapter members and not remembering much,” she said.

This was an opportunity that allowed chapter members to start developing relationships with potential new members.

Dunlavey said she hopes this event will increase participation in Panhellenic recruitment.

“We felt that it was a good representation of the community and was a bit more informal and approachable for women who might be on the fence on joining,” Dunlavey said.

This was the first event held by the new Panhellenic executive board for this academic year.

Zhong said the crew was definitely nervous to launch the new event, but Panhellenic Council has gotten the same feedback many times in previous years so the executive board wanted to make a change.

“We had way more people than we thought,” Panhellenic President Morgan Gillies, ‘20, said.

She said more than 200 people registered, and the event went smoothly, making it more enjoyable for potential new members and chapter members.

“It took a lot of planning,” Zhong said. “In the end, we really believe that it did pay off, and it accomplished the goal we wanted.”

The executive board hopes Panhel Preview will become an annual event to market Greek life in a more positive light.

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