It's That Time of Year Again:

“Back to School” signs in stores start to pop up and “Residence Hall Move In” sections are cleared of Command Strips and under-bed storage bins. For many college girls, this time of year calls for the preparation to undergo the sorority recruitment process. For Potential New Members, Active Members, Family Members, Friends, and Reference Writers alike, this is an exciting time to watch young women go through the recruitment process and join an organization that helps foster lifelong friendships and provides the resources to gain lifelong skills. 

Q: Could you tell us a bit more about yourself – as well as more about your background in general and how Recruitment Ready came to be?

LN: “I graduated from Auburn in 2019 but am originally from Knoxville, TN. I also have two brothers and married into a family of all boys, so I would like to say that I bring the girl power to the family! All of that to say, I went through recruitment at Auburn and had a great experience. I truly believe that you can build lifelong friendships, you can grow independence, you can learn so much about yourself and be a part of something bigger than just yourself.

I absolutely loved it, and I didn’t have a lot of older girls pulling for me; I definitely talked my way through engaging conversations and really focused on connecting and meeting new people and absolutely loved [the process] for that reason. I did not know that you have to wear a black dress on pref at Auburn, and I remember feeling like everyone had gotten the memo that you wear black except for me. I just wished that I had an older sister that would’ve told me [what to do as I went throughout the process].

I graduated from Auburn in 2019 and was working as the internal and external event planner at Children’s Healthcare in Atlanta, planning their big fundraising galas. While on the side, I had moms text me from my hometown asking me to help their daughter with what to wear and what she should say [during recruitment]. I was one of the first girls to go out of state from Knoxville to Auburn, so I was getting these texts, and it was so fun for me. So I was just doing it on the side really – helping [PNMs] here and there. 

Then, COVID hit, and I had an influx of people reaching out to me because they still did recruitment – but it was online and all videos. That was tough, but I still helped girls through the process. Each year, by word of mouth, [my job helping PNMs prepare for recruitment] kind of grew naturally, and I started to host group webinars. (Laughs) I didn’t mean for it to be a whole thing. 

In 2022, I created an online course called the ‘Everything Package’ that helps girls from start to finish. They learn everything they should know from confidence building, to styling, to resumes, to reference letters, to letters of support. We really focus on helping girls from a holistic approach – our tagline is that ‘We celebrate happy bid days and girls who are becoming young women along the way.’ I love the art of the thank you note and all of that kind of stuff, so we teach those things in the online course, and that is when the business really started to grow quickly. Now, girls could get recruitment ready from anywhere – from Europe, from their home, anywhere! It wasn’t just one-on-one coaching any longer. I do still coach one-on-one, and we do styling, conversation prep, etc. Last year we had requests for help in general styling, etiquette, and confidence building, so we also have another side of the business that helps girls with those kinds of things that’s unrelated to sorority recruitment. That being said, our main focus is getting girls ready for sorority recruitment, and it’s honestly just been a joy. It’s been fun to step into entrepreneurship – which is not something I thought I would be doing, but it really grew organically, and I’m grateful for the opportunity.  

Q: Do you have any Susan Shaw jewelry recommendations for recruitment?

LN: “Um, yes. I have like 19 options that I love (laughs). 

I love the gold Butterfly Studs because I think a lot of girls that I work with are very into the butterflies. My brand colors are blue and white, so naturally I love the Blue and White Ginkgo Earrings. Additionally, I think the Cross Bangle was really fun and simple, as well as a tangible reminder that you can still have your faith and be true to who you are even when you’re going through recruitment. I also loved the Cotton Pearl Clusters; I just think that they are so timeless. I especially think that they would be so cute when going through at Georgia or Auburn – where a lot of girls are wearing black dresses one round. I am a beach girl, so I do love the La Mer Sea Glass bracelet, as well as the Double Strand Coin Pearl Necklace. I love pearls, and I think a statement necklace is one of those fun ways to stand out from other girls and make a statement for yourself. 

I also thought that the Pearl Hoops would be really cute for bid day if you’re wanting to put on something really timeless that will go with anything – they will look great with whatever sorority color you have. I love the Square Cotton Pearl Drop Earrings and Pearl Bracelet – lots of pearls. I love the Alys Necklaces. I think they are just so cute and are available in so many different colors. I would wear them with a t-shirt so quickly if I was going through recruitment, but I also wear them all the time myself. Finally, I love the Madeline Studs for a pop of color when trying to stand out – the pink and turquoise are probably my top picks.”

Q: Do you have any recommendations for Bid Day gifts?

LN: “I think that the Mini Heart Studs are super cute – specifically maybe for an aunt or friend figure that was writing a reference for someone that they may not be super close to but still wanted to send something personalized to let the PNM know that they are thinking of them. Susan Shaw has some great pieces in the colors or including the symbol of many of the sororities. (check them out below!) I’ve also seen older sisters give Recruitment Ready to her younger sister [as a gift], so I think that a lot of these jewelry pieces can be gifted from an older sister to a younger sister too. 

I would always recommend something timeless. For example, gold and pearls will always be a reminder of a sweet time in womanhood that can not only be worn throughout college, but also long after. I just think about how Susan Shaw can meet girls at all different levels of their lives and as they step into all the different phases of life. My mom always liked to give me timeless gifts that I could wear throughout my life.”