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Conference Welcomes Freshmen

Sororities, ILGs Take Part in Convocation

By Shankar Mukherji


The rush season officially began for 429 of the MIT community’s newest members at the Women’s Convocation held in 10-250.

“The purpose of this gathering is to introduce you to [various] living options and give you basic information,” said Margaret H. Shyr ’03, president of the Women’s Conference.

Shyr explained how rush has enhanced her experience at the Institute, and advised the freshmen women to, above all else, “be comfortable and happy.”

The theme that resonated most with the audience, however, was that of choice. Speaker after speaker stressed the importance of keeping one’s housing options open.

“Over the next four or five days you will explore ... many living options,” said Kate Baxter, program coordinator for the fraternities, sororities, and independent living groups.

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions to help you choose where to live ... Remember that your living group will provide you with the foundation and framework [for your college experience],” said Baxter.

Panhel, LGC Leaders Speak

Following the introductory remarks by Shyr and Baxter, representatives of the Panhellenic Association (Panhel) and Living Group Council (LGC) were allowed to speak about their respective organizations.

“One of your most important decisions,” said Annie K. Wang ’02, president of Panhel, “is whether or not a sorority is for you.”

“Your sorority will be a supportive network of sisters and alumnae,” Wang said.

“Panhel [as a whole] represents a strong bond between women,” said Wang. In keeping with the theme of inter-chapter “sisterhood”, the presidents of MIT’s five Panhellenic sororities were introduced as a group.

Following Panhel’s address to the freshman women, LGC Speaker Robin M. Thompson ’03 introduced the audience to the Institute’s unique system of independent living groups.

ILGs “are very different from the traditional fraternity/sorority system,” Thompson said, “in that they are mostly coed, but not all, and not affiliated with national organizations, but some are.”

“As you can see, it is hard to describe the ILGs together,” Thompson said.

Despite the differences between the groups, however, Thompson said that each one houses a close-knit community.

“It [becomes] their home, not just a place to sleep at night,” Thompson said.

ILGs introduce themselves to frosh

Following these speeches, each independent living group was allowed to give a short presentation.

Particularly well-received was Delta Psi: No. 6 Club’s “Top 6 reasons to live at No. 6,” which featured such enticements as a variety of accents and a “Colombian ‘Ricky Martin.’”

Epsilon Theta’s wombat also made an appearance in the packed 10-250, not to mention a tag-team speech by Fenway House and the Women’s Independent Living Group.