Kelsey (PC’ 15) and I have an older sister that graduated from Alabama in 2012. She was in a sorority that we both loved, and we were both set on pledging them. We were always at her house when we would come to Tuscaloosa and we received countless cute hand-me-down t-shirts from her. When Kelsey went through recruitment, she didn't end up in the sorority we had dreamt about as little girls, which was heartbreaking for me. This made it harder for me when going through rush the next year because I had watched her go through this. But when she pledged Delta Zeta, she ended up loving it and couldn’t see herself anywhere else.
Before recruitment, I was terrified about choosing which sorority was right for me. The first day of recruitment was fun because I was able to experience all 16 sororities going through each and every house on the row. Although I was still set on the two sororities my sisters were in, I knew in order to find my home I had to give every chapter at Alabama a chance. As I got further in the week, it was harder for me to narrow down which one I truly wanted. I was in love with both sororities. All week, Kelsey kept telling me, “just follow your heart and choose whichever sorority you like best, whether that’s Delta Zeta or not.” I was torn throughout the week because I wanted to be with Kelsey, yet I kept being drawn to the other sorority my oldest sister had been in.
When Preference Day came, I really had to decide what I wanted. I had both houses scheduled back to back. Luckily, there was a rain delay in between so I had more time to think about my tough decision. I never felt so alone, like no one would help me. I was heartbroken at the thought that I would let Kelsey down if I didn’t choose Delta Zeta or my parents would be disappointed in me if I went my own path. Despite the hard decision I was facing, the determining factor for me was which house I felt like I could be my best self in. The house that I could walk into after pulling an all nighter with no makeup on and in a beat up t-shirt and never feel ugly. I knew whichever house I chose needed to be the one that felt like that. When I walked into Delta Zeta during preference round, I knew DZ was that house.
I woke up on Bid Day with the biggest smile on my face knowing I made the right choice. I was so scared on the inside because I thought that I wouldn’t get the house I wanted. When my Rho Chi’s counted down to open our bids, my heart stopped. I finally opened it and heard 2,487 other girls screaming at the top of their lungs. I just stayed silent with a smile on my face because even though I knew what I wanted, the system still worked out and I was beyond happy. I ran as fast I could to the Delta Zeta castle to be welcomed by Kelsey and my now big, Marcy.
I love Delta Zeta with my whole heart, and I have never felt more myself than in the Delta Zeta castle I call home. Despite how tough recruitment may have been, Delta Zeta has been the biggest blessing in my life and is still the best decision I’ve ever made. Sharing this bond with my best friend and sister, Kelsey has been rewarding as well. We get to experience college together and with an additional other 300 other sisters. I’m beyond grateful for the recruitment process and how happy I am today with how it all worked out.
-Maddie Hyatt (PC’ 16)
Official blog of the Alpha Gamma Chapter of Delta Zeta at the University of Alabama.