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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: Pi Beta Phi
Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. In honor of his non-violent campaign against racism, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. He was a proud member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. It is also the day upon … Continue reading
Can anyone in America today imagine not knowing that a big snowstorm was heading his/her way? This morning in southern Illinois there is ice everywhere. Yesterday on my afternoon walk with the dogs, I was warm just wearing a sweatshirt. It … Continue reading
Happy 2018! My resolution is to keep telling the stories of GLO members. Today’s post highlights some of the social media posts of the last week. Condolences to the family of Zackari Parrish, the Douglas County, Colorado, deputy who was killed on … Continue reading
Ninety-three years ago today, First Lady Grace Goodhue Coolidge was getting ready for an important event. She may have been travelling to Boston or perhaps she was already there, visiting with friends. On the next day, December 12, 1924, she … Continue reading
Have you heard that Britian’s Prince Harry will marry Meghan Markle, a Kappa Kappa Gamma? Odds are that her royal title will be Duchess of Sussex. Markle is an initiate of the Kappa chapter at Northwestern University. My Alpha Gam friend … Continue reading
My posts have been few and far between recently and I apologize. I’ve been away from home. Congratulations to two special NPC women who were honored at the recent NPC meeting in Denver: Betty Quick, Gamma Phi Beta, and former … Continue reading
On Monday, I headed east to Indiana to do some research in Carmel and get closer to completing a project. My dissertation, Coeducation and the History of Women’s Fraternities 1867-1902, covered the seven founding National Panhellenic Conference organizations, the campuses where these … Continue reading
We were driving in I-70 to Dayton, Ohio, from the airport in St. Louis, where my husband picked me up. As we were almost through Illinois, I was looking out the window and I spotted a sign that noted we … Continue reading
When Grace Goodhue Coolidge fell asleep on the evening of August 2, 1923, she was the wife of the Vice President. In the middle of the night, she awoke to news that President Harding was dead. She dressed and went … Continue reading