Sorority Letters of Recommendation, and Letters of Support, LOS, LOR

Hi girls! It’s time to address some of the most common questions moms and PNMs ask when it comes to sorority rush: What are Letters of Recommendation, Letters of Support, and Recruitment Information Forms?

This is part one of rush prep, and part of what we like to call your “pre-recruitment materials.”

If you’re beginning the sorority recruitment process, you likely have learned your university’s rush process necessitates one or more of these items listed above. Other common terms include LOR, RIF, LOS, or Rec Letter.

For any school with a competitive recruitment process, these are a must!

Let’s break it down:

Recruitment Information Form (abbreviation = RIF) – A Recruitment Information Form is just that: a form. This fill-in-the-blank form is found on the sorority’s national website, typically in a members-only section that requires a sorority alumna to log in to access and complete them on a PNM’s* behalf. They’re fairly standardized, but questions do vary from sorority to sorority. Standard questions include requesting a PNM’s SAT/ACT score, high school GPA, class ranking, family or legacy information, and information on high school activities/volunteer work. Most RIF forms also provide the opportunity for the alumna to attach and submit a PNM’s social resume as well as one or more photos.

FYI – There are many, many different names for these forms, and it varies by sorority. Some other common names are Membership Information Sheet (MIS), Potential Member Recommendation (PMR), Sponsor Form, and Rec Letter, to name a few. They all mean the same thing. It’s the form on the sorority’s national website.

*PNM = potential new member (this is what sororities call rushees)

Letter of Recommendation (abbreviation = LOR, also called a Rec Letter) – A Letter of Recommendation refers to a personal letter of endorsement an alumna can write.  This letter is often turned in alongside a Recruitment Information Form (above). Most sorority Recruitment Information Forms (RIFs) have an option to turn one in, but some don’t. We always recommend an alumna completes and submits a Rec Letter alongside her RIF, when possible, as it helps the sorority get to know more about that PNM.

Letter of Support (abbreviation = LOS) – This is very similar to a Letter of Recommendation, in that it’s also a personal letter endorsing a PNM for membership.  A Letter of Support should be submitted in addition to the Letter of Recommendation, not in lieu of a Letter of Rec / RIF.  Letters of Support can also be submitted differently than Letters of Recommendation. Worth mentioning, Letters of Support are not always necessary / accepted at all schools.

Sorority Recruitment Packet – In order for an alumna to complete one of the items above on your behalf, it’s super helpful to provide her with a little more information about yourself.  The best way for a PNM to do this is by creating a social or “rush resume.” Don’t forget – she also needs a resume and photos to submit with the RIF on your behalf.

A sorority recruitment packet contains the following digital assets: a rush resume, several professional photos of yourself, and a cover letter + thank you. It’s your way of packaging everything together and presenting it to an alumna in one neat little package, helping her help you.

Bonus Question: When are they due?

Different schools and various sororities have varying deadlines, but as a general rule of thumb: the earlier you get these turned in, the better.

For universities with a competitive fall sorority recruitment, your daughter’s Letters of Recommendation (LORs) and Recommendation Information Forms (RIFs) should be completed and turned in by May for the very best results.

For schools with a competitive spring sorority recruitment (aka deferred sorority recruitment), Letters of Recommendation / RIFs can (and should) be turned in by May as well (yes – this surprises a lot of families).

Some universities will say Recs / RIFs are not required for recruitment, or that it’s the sorority’s obligation to provide one for PNMs. Ignore this! Hundreds of other PNMs know to turn theirs in, and it puts you at a significant advantage during recruitment to do so. Submitting your pre-recruitment materials is of the best ways to get on a sorority’s radar long before formal recruitment begins.

There you go! We hope this clears up some of the confusion on these rush terms as you begin to learn about the recruitment process.

PS – Want 1 x 1, step-by-step help with all of this?

—> Digital Packet Creation (Rush Resume, Rush Photography tips, Cover Letter)

—> Letter of Recommendation / Letters of Support

  • A list of which sororities you need to obtain rec letters for at your specific school
  • Guidance on how many RIFs / Recs to submit per chapter to be in a competitive position
  • Letters of Support & if they’re applicable (or accepted) at your school
  • How to find and ask alumnae (with copy/paste templates!)
  • List of unique names of the RIF forms + links to every single RIF form at your school, neatly packaged
  • Deadlines
  • Help understanding which alumna should complete the forms one on your behalf to get the highest score (Letters of Recommendation & Recruitment Information forms are scored by the recruitment team).
  • One-on-one coaching for mom/daughter duos to answer all of your questions and ensure it’s been completed correctly

As seen in cosmo, sorority rush coaching, sorority recruitmentAnd this is just the beginning! Our coaches can help with so much more.

Complete the form below to chat with a rush coach who specializes in recruitment at your school. We’re happy to answer any questions you might have about rush coaching and the Hiking in Heels program.