Honor Societies

Phi Beta Kappa (ΦΒΚ)

The Eta of Virginia chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Society annually elects a limited number of juniors and seniors to membership. In electing these members, the Chapter seeks to recognize academic attainment, moral character, responsible citizenship, and a broad intellectual curiosity. No more than 10% of a prospective graduating class can be elected. Consideration is given on an individual basis to those students who, having completed at least four semesters at Hampden-Sydney, and having failed no courses, meet the following criteria:

  1. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.800 on work at Hampden-Sydney for those in their sixth semester; a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.600 on work at Hampden-Sydney for those in their seventh semester; or, for those in their eighth semester, a minimum GPA of 3.500 on work at Hampden-Sydney.
  2. A college record which, as determined by the Chapter, demonstrates that the student has
    • an interest in the literary heritage of the English-speaking peoples;
    • a conceptual grasp of mathematical structures and derivations;
    • an understanding of the religious and philosophical roots of Western culture;
    • familiarity with the conceptual structure and heuristic methods of modern science;
    • a perception of the historical development of the government and culture of the United States;
    • a substantive grasp of the historical development of the institutions of Western culture;
    • a commitment to the liberal ideal of education as revealed by a prudently balanced and selected program of courses.

The application of the standards of Section Ⅱ may result in the election of some students whose cumulative GPAs are lower than those of candidates who are not elected. Fulfillment of minimum course requirements does not per se satisfy the criteria listed above.

President
Dr. Steele Nowlin

Secretary-Treasurer
Dr. David S. Pelland


Omicron Delta Kappa (ΟΔΚ)

Omicron Delta Kappa is a national leadership honor society for college men and women. It was founded in 1914 at Washington & Lee University to recognize and encourage superior scholarship and leadership by men and women of exemplary character. Membership in ODK is a mark of highest distinction and honor.

The Lambda Circle was founded at Hampden-Sydney on April 12, 1924, and is the eleventh oldest of the society’s more than 200 circles. The members of Omicron Delta Kappa seek to use their personal influence as campus leaders to better campus life and to encourage high standards in all activities.

Men selected for membership are tapped in the fall and spring. To be selected as a member of the Lambda Circle, a junior or senior must must have a strong academic record, with a grade point average in the top 35% of his class and must have actively participated in three and demonstrated constructive leadership in two of the five areas of college life considered by the society: scholarship; athletics; social service, religious activities, and campus government; journalism, speech, and the mass media; and creative and performing arts.

In addition to regular selection of members, the Circle awards each fall a $1,500 scholarship to a sophomore in recognition of constructive leadership and academic achievement during his freshman year, and each spring, the Cohen Citizenship Award to a senior who by his actions and example has contributed significantly to the betterment of the College community.

President
Benjamin Moore Durham

Vice-President
Diego Rolando Velasco

Faculty Advisor
Dr. Robert T. Herdegen Ⅲ

Faculty Secretary
Dr. Elizabeth J. Deis


Alpha Psi Omega (ΑΨΩ)

Alpha Psi Omega is a national honors society recognizing outstanding work in the theatre arts. The Hampden-Sydney chapter was established in 1932, and was chartered as the Delta Delta Cast. The fraternity was reactivated in the Spring of 1995. Members meet their criteria by acting, directing, designing, or working in technical areas for a minimum of three Fine Arts Department-Jongleurs productions. Members must also exhibit dedication, a working knowledge of all areas of theatre production, and outstanding ability in their particular field of interest.

Advisor
Prof. Shirley Kagan


Chi Beta Phi (ΧΒΦ)

Founded at Randolph-Macon College in 1916 and installed at Hampden-Sydney in 1921, Chi Beta Phi is a national honorary scientific fraternity. It exists to recognize excellence in scientific endeavors and to encourage participation in scientific fields. A bid to membership may be extended to students who have shown a continued study of the natural sciences and mathematics with a 3.3 average or better and an overall GPA of 3.0 or better. Among its activities, the fraternity sponsors speakers to help spread scientific knowledge and appreciation.

President
Drake Bishop

Vice President
Khobi Williamson

Secretary-Treasurer
Harry Squire

Advisor
Dr. Herbert J. Sipe, Jr.


Eta Sigma Phi (ΗΣΦ)

Eta Sigma Phi, the national honorary classical society, was founded at the University of Chicago in 1924, and Beta Theta chapter was established on the Hill in 1942. Its membership includes those who have demonstrated high proficiency in the study of the classics, having completed at least three semesters of Latin or Greek with an appropriate scholastic average.

Advisor
Dr. Daniella Widdows


Omicron Delta Epsilon (ΟΔΕ)

Omicron Delta Epsilon is a national honorary fraternity in economics. The Iota of Virginia chapter was established at Hampden-Sydney in 1971 to stimulate interest in the study and application of economics and to recognize outstanding economics students. To qualify for election, a student must evince a significant interest in the discipline either by majoring in economics or by taking a substantial number of economics courses and must have accumulated an overall grade-point average of 3.0 or higher.

Advisor
Dr. Anthony Carilli


Phi Alpha Theta (ΦΑΘ)

Phi Alpha Theta is an international honor society in history which encourages the study of history through research, good teaching, and the exchange of ideas among historians. Members are students and professors elected to the society upon the basis of excellence in the study or writing of history. Consideration is normally given to those students who have taken a minimum of twelve hours of history with a 3.1 average or better, an overall GPA of 3.0 or better, and who are in the top 35 percent of their class.

Advisor
Dr. James Frusetta


Phi Sigma Iota (ΦΣΙ)

Phi Sigma Iota, the international foreign language honor society, was founded in 1917 to recognize, in the word of its constitution, “outstanding ability and attainments in the study and teaching of foreign languages,” to stimulate “advanced pursuits and individual research in this discipline,” and to promote “a cultural enrichment and sentiment of international amity derived from the knowledge and use of foreign languages.”

Advisor
Prof. Germán Salinas


Pi Mu Epsilon (ΠΜΕ)

Pi Mu Epsilon is a national honorary mathematics society. Founded in 1914 at Syracuse University, Pi Mu Epsilon exists for the purpose of promoting and recognizing scholarly achievement in mathematics. Hampden‑Sydney’s chapter, the Eta of Virginia, was installed on May 10, 1982.

Advisors
Dr. David S. Pelland
Dr. Heidi N. Hulsizer


Pi Sigma Alpha (ΠΣΑ)

Theta Omicron chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the national political science honor society, was established at Hampden-Sydney College during the 1977–1978 academic year. Pi Sigma Alpha recognizes students who adhere to high standards of scholarship and attain academic distinction in political science. Membership is determined by faculty selection and limited to students who have completed at least 12 semester hours of work in political science, including at least one course at the 300 or 400 level, with an average grade of ““B” or higher, and who have maintained a standard of general scholarship sufficient to place them in the upper third of their college class.

Advisor
Dr. Celia M. Carroll Jones


Psi Chi International (ΨΧ)

Psi Chi is the international honor society in psychology, open to undergraduate and graduate psychology students of good character who show serious involvement with the science of psychology and have excelled academically in course work in this area. In order to be eligible for membership, one must have completed 12 hours toward a major in psychology, have a 3.25 average in psychology courses, and be in the top one-third of his class in all subjects.

Advisor
Dr. Daniel Mossler


Sigma Tau Delta (ΣΤΔ)

An international honorary society in English, Sigma Tau Delta was founded in 1924 and chartered at Hampden-Sydney in 1990. It recognizes excellence and encourages further achievement in English language and literature studies, and it seeks to foster creative and critical writing. A member must have a B or greater average in at least three English courses, one of which can be a creative writing course, and a GPA of 3.0 or better.

Advisor
Dr. Katherine J. Weese


Theta Alpha Kappa (ΘΑΚ)

Theta Alpha Kappa is a national honorary society founded to promote the academic study of religion. The local chapter inducted its first class of Hampden-Sydney students in 1991.

Advisor
Dr. Jeffrey Vogel


Society for Collegiate Journalists

The Society for Collegiate Journalists (formerly Pi Delta Epsilon) is a national collegiate honorary fraternity. The Society recognizes outstanding achievements in or contributions to journalism and strives to encourage good journalistic practices in undergraduate institutions. It was founded at Syracuse University in 1909, and a chapter was installed at Hampden-Sydney in 1939. The Society charter was reactivated in 1999. Students who have contributed substantially to The Garnet, The Tiger or WWHS-FM, and are in good academic standing are eligible for membership in the society. In 2010, the Hampden-Sydney chapter received the Edward E. McDonald Award for National Chapter of the Year.

Advisor
Mr. Thomas H. Shomo ’69