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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 Xi Delta
Summer is convention season for Greek-Letter Organizations and it has been for more than a century. In the 1800s, conventions tended to take place during the academic year or over the Christmas holiday. While many GLOs have different names for … Continue reading
Last week, driving from southern Illinois to Indianapolis, I found myself about an hour ahead of schedule, so when I came upon the Greencastle exit, I took it. My quest was to get a glimpse of the DePauw University campus. In … Continue reading
My P.E.O. chapter met on Monday night. The reminder e-mail which the President sent a few days before the meeting was a double reminder. No only did it refresh my mind about the meeting, but it also told me that … 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
I am knee-deep in the 1880s researching an upcoming talk. I’m going through an 1887 Arrow of Pi Beta Phi which has the organization’s first directory of members included in it. My mind is wandering to all corners of the … Continue reading
With a new academic year on the horizon, there is a lot going on in the world of fraternities and sororities. Recruitment is in full swing on some campuses and others are preparing for it. The Circle of Sisterhood, that wonderful … Continue reading
It’s fraternity and sorority convention and leadership event time! My weekend was spent at Pi Beta Phi’s Alumnae Leadership Summit in St. Louis. Pi Phi’s conventions are in the odd years, since we were founded in 1867, and these smaller … Continue reading
Sometimes, Plan B is the way to go. I had a post almost all written about the two National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) women who are being inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame this Saturday. It was lost to cyberspace … Continue reading
June 9, 1902, is a defining date for two organizations, Alpha Xi Delta and the P.E.O. Sisterhood. P.E.O. was founded as a collegiate organization at Iowa Wesleyan College on January 21, 1869. Alpha Xi Delta was founded on April 17, … Continue reading