History

Alpha Phi was founded at Syracuse University by ten of the first nineteen women admitted to the newly opened university. Our founders were women with brave hearts that were filled with a noble purpose and with eyes that saw clearly into the future. These were the Original Ten, the founders of Alpha Phi. Pursuing their studies in a thoroughly male-dominated environment, these women had a pressing need for friends who could sympathize with each other's problems and support each others' aspirations. On September 18, 1872, these ten women initiated themselves into Alpha Phi. To learn more about the great legacy of Alpha Phi, check out www.alphaphi.org.


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Firsts

  • Called the world's first inter-sorority meeting, a group that later became the National Panhellenic Conference
  • Alpha Phi built the world's first sorority house on the campus of Syracuse University in 1872.
  • Alpha Phi was the first sorority to use traveling delegates to monitor chapters. These women are now known as Educational Leadership Consultants and District Governors.

  • Alpha Phi was the first women's society to use Greek letters as an emblem.

  • Alpha Phi was the first sorority to establish a foundation, The Alpha Phi Foundation, in 1957.

  • Alpha Phi was the first NPC group to establish a presence on the World Wide Web.

  • Alpha Phi was the first sorority to publish a book-length history.

 

Facts

  • Alpha Phi is the third largest women's sorority and one of only three international sororities with 150 chapters in the US and Canada.

  • Alpha Phi was founded in 1872 by 10 of the first 20 women to enter Syracuse University.

  • Alpha Phi is the fourth oldest national women's sorority.

  • Alpha Phi is pronounced Alpha "fee" (long "e") not "fie," because a Syracuse Greek professor informed our founding sisters that it was the correct Greek pronunciation.

  • Three of our founders were listed in Who's Who of America: Clara Bradley Burdette, Martha Foote Crow, and Rena Michaels Atchison.

  • Alpha Phi is a true "international" sorority. It has maintained the longest continuous presence in Canada of any sorority. The Xi chapter was established at the University of Toronto in 1906.

  • Alpha Phi has over 175 active alumnae chapters.