Phi Eta Sigma is the first and the original honor society for first-year students. Phi Eta Sigma was founded at the University of Illinois on March 22, 1923, to encourage and recognize high scholastic achievement among members of the freshman classes.
Facts about Phi Eta Sigma:
- Founded in 1923 at the University of Illinois, Phi Eta Sigma is the nation’s oldest and largest honor society for first-year college and university students in all disciplines.
- Inspired by the past and dedicated to the future, the Society’s mission is to encourage and reward academic excellence among freshmen in institutions of higher learning.
- The three Greek words appearing on our crest form the motto of the organization: “Knowledge is Power.”
- Those elected to membership include those who have a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.5 on a 4.0 scale at the end of any first year, full-time curricular period, provided they have carried a normal academic load acceptable toward a bachelor’s degree and rank in the upper 20 percent of their class.
- Since its founding, more than 975,000 scholars have been inducted into Phi Eta Sigma.
- Phi Eta Sigma chapters are chartered on 365 campuses across the United States.
- Hundreds of college and university faculty and staff volunteers share their time to serve as advisers to local chapters.
- Approximately $285,000 in scholarships is awarded annually by the national organization, and many additional thousands are awarded by local chapters.
- An important strength of Phi Eta Sigma is its form of government. It is governed by a Constitution and Laws generated by student delegates attending national conventions. At the biennial conventions, student delegates also elect the national officers and Executive Committee members.
- Phi Eta Sigma conducts a biennial national convention with attendee expenses, excluding transportation, paid by the national office for a chapter adviser and student delegate from each chapter.
Membership into the honor society is by invitation only. Upon completion of your first year at St. Mary’s University, students who have achieved
a cumulative GPA of at least a 3.50 will be invited to join.