TOLEDO, Ohio — COVID-19 is a constant reminder that every aspect of college life had changed here at the University of Toledo. In particular, student organizations such as fraternities and sororities, which now have to have recruitment virtually.
"We thought it was going to be normal in the fall. We thought we'd be ready to go for recruitment in-person," Panhellenic President Olivia Shrewsbery said. "We planned for recruitment in-person during the summer. We were like okay, fall is going to be normal, in-person recruitment is still a go."
Fraternities at the university started recruitment on Aug. 31, after changing plans eight times throughout the summer. Sororities start their recruitment on Sept. 9.
Both have had their share of road bumps, but are doing what they can to make it work.
"All the chapters have their own events throughout the week, like playing video games, watching TV with each other, Netflix parties, or watching basketball games," Vice President of Interfraternity Council Relations Chad Oswald said.
Both groups believe their innovation is what's helped them to adapt and continued to make everything unique; even if it's through a computer screen.
"A positive thing about it is that (it) lets me and my executive board get creative on what we can do. As a freshman, I went through recruitment and being in-person. The normal process was fun, it was stressful, but I got to find my forever home," Shrewsbery said.
Leaders say they want prospective members to be able to feel that connection despite the unusual circumstances.
Both groups have put out statements to the community, urging everyone not to have gatherings of more than ten people.
Meanwhile, they are hoping they can all get together again soon.