What is Rush?

Rush is a period that runs the first three weeks of September in which fraternities at UBC conduct their annual or semi-annual new member search. With the exception of Psi Upsilon, Phi Gamma Delta, Kappa Sigma, and Alpha Delta Phi, who do a Spring Rush in January, this is the only time of the year in which fraternities at UBC recruit new members to join their ranks.

Official Rush Events

Brothers Wade and Scott cheesin at a rush event on Brother Sidwell's yacht.

Although most fraternities host events most days during the Rush period, there are only three official Rush events at UBC. Dictated by the Interfraternity Council, these events are First Rush, Second Rush, and Formal Rush. First and Second Rush are simultaneous open houses at all fraternity houses and are strictly male-only and alcohol-free events. First Rush takes place usually mid-September, with Second Rush the following week. The purpose of these events is to give anyone with an interest in joining a fraternity at UBC the chance to visit all the houses and see which is a good fit for them. Traditionally, Delta Kappa Epsilon maintains the highest numbers of attendees at these events of all fraternities.

Formal Rush

Formal Rush occurs on the final evening of rush. It differs from the other official Rush events in that it is invite-only and has a formal dress code, in addition to being typically held at various locations throughout Vancouver. In the past, ∆KE has held Formal Rush at Alumni's Mansions, large yachts, and other exclusive locations. In order to be extended a Formal Rush invitation, a prospective new member (also called a Rushee) must impress upon a fraternity that he is worthy of the gesture. If you are unsure if you have been extended a Formal Rush invitation, ask. In all likelihood, however, you will know when you are invited.

In all, a Rushee may only accept two Formal Rush Invitations due to the logistics of the event. It is most common to only accept one Formal Rush Invitation, to demonstrate to the fraternity in question that you desire membership. Typically, Rushees arrive at the Fraternity house and are provided transportation to and from the Formal Rush that they are attending. If you do choose to accept two Formal Rush invitations, transportation will be provided between the two events. Delta Kappa Epsilon strongly recommends attending its Formal Rush after that of another fraternity.

Bids Day

The boys celebrating another great Rush.

The boys celebrating another great Rush.

Bids Day is the morning immediately following Formal Rush. Breathe a sigh of relief; this is the day you've been waiting for. Rushees will make their way to the AMS Student Nest, where their fraternal fate will be ultimately decided. In order to become a pledge of a fraternity, you must be extended a Bid Card. Bid Cards are invitations to become a pledge of a fraternity, and are typically letters in envelopes. Being extended a Bid Card is a great honour.

Two rooms will be rented for Bids Day. In the first, a large table is covered in Bid Cards from all the fraternities. Look for one with your name on it. If you attended two Formal Rush events, you may have up to two Bid Cards. Conversely, you may have none if the fraternity or fraternities decided it wasn't a good fit. If you don't have a bid card, don't be discouraged; there's always next year. If you have two, you now must decide which fraternity you would like to pledge.

Once you've decided, you can enter the second room, which consists of ten tables, one for each fraternity, with the Presidents and Rush Chairmen of each fraternity seated at their respective tables. If you are declining a Bid from a fraternity, it is common practice to decline their bid card and give it back to them, before proceeding to the fraternity you would like to accept a Bid from. Shake hands, put on the shirt, and that's it: you're a pledge.


Once you've been extended a Bid, you're not in the fraternity yet. What lies ahead is a phase called pledging. You can read all about pledging on our Pledging Information Page.

Ready to begin your journey on the way to becoming a member of Delta Kappa Epsilon? Fill out our nomination form.