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About Fran Becque, Ph.D.
Welcome! Chances are good you found this blog by searching for something about fraternities or sororities.
The history of Greek-letter organizations (GLOs) - fraternities and sororities - is one of my great passions. I was the last person anyone would have suspected of joining a sorority in college. I am sure I would have agreed with them, too.
When I made my way to Syracuse University, I saw the houses with the Greek letters that edged Walnut Park, and wished I could tour them. My roommate suggested I sign up for rush (as it was then called, today it’s known as recruitment) and go through the house tour round and then drop out of rush. It sounded like a plan. I didn’t realize that I would end up pledging.
In this blog I will share the history of GLOs and other topics. I wrote a dissertation on “Coeducation and the History of Women’s Fraternities 1867-1902.″ It chronicles the growth of the system and the birth of the National Panhellenic Conference.
My Master's thesis details the history of the fraternity system at Southern Illinois University Carbondale from 1948-1960. The dates are significant ones and the thesis is available on the top menu.
I have done research at the Student Life Archives and have written several histories of University of Illinois fraternity chapters for the Society for the Preservation of Greek Housing.
Other topics having to do with higher education also come into play. P.E.O., a Philanthropic Education Organization, was founded as a collegiate organization. I am a P.E.O. and I like to talk about its history. Colleges with which I have a personal connection - Knox College, Mount Holyoke, Washington and Lee, University of Michigan, Syracuse University, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, to name a few - also find their way into these posts.
Thanks for dropping by! I hope you’ll follow my blog. We who enjoy fraternity and sorority history need to stick together. I put together a Pinterest board about fraternity and sorority history. It is at pinterest.com/glohistory/.
Category Archives: Alpha Sigma Alpha
Alpha Sigma Alpha was founded on November 15, 1901, at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. Its founders had been asked to join some of the other sororities on campus, but they wanted to stay … Continue reading
But isn’t the badge a pin? And isn’t what you call a women’s fraternity really a sorority? And really, isn’t that just for when you are in college? Why in the world do you still volunteer for an organization you joined as … Continue reading
Alpha Sigma Alpha was founded on November 15, 1901 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. Its founders had been asked to join some of the other sororities on campus, but they wanted to stay … Continue reading
Tonight’s Vice-Presidential debate will take place at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. Longwood has a prominent place in the history of sororities. Ever heard the phrase “Farmville Four”? It refers to the four NPC groups founded at the Virginia’s State Female … Continue reading
For today’s post about an Alpha Sigma Alpha, I was going to write about Dale Zeller, an educator. When I went searching for information about her, I found a tribute to Elva Doyle Reed written by Ida Shaw Martin. Mrs. Martin, … Continue reading
If I had a top ten list of the fraternity greats, living or dead, with whom I could have dinner, Sarah Ida Shaw Martin would be on that list. Tri Deltas know her as Sarah Ida Shaw; the rest of … Continue reading
Happy Founders’ Day, Alpha Sigma Alpha! Thank you for giving us NPC’s International Badge Day which, since 1997, has taken place on the first Monday in March. In the spring of 1996, after she wore her Alpha Sigma Alpha pin to … Continue reading
In the process of compiling large amounts of information, there is a moment when I question my sanity. The point comes somewhere in the midst of spending too much time in research having too little to show for it, with … Continue reading
Alpha Sigma Alpha was founded on November 15, 1901 at the State Female Normal School (now Longwood University) in Farmville, Virginia. It is the youngest of the Farmville Four, the four National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) organizations founded on that campus. … Continue reading
March 3 is National Panhellenic Conference’s International Badge Day. On March 4, 1925, Calvin Coolidge was inaugurated as the 30th President of the United States, a role in which he had been serving after Warren G. Harding’s death.* What better way … Continue reading