Tag Archives: barnard college

    • Sorority Spotlight ~ Alpha Omicron Pi


      Alpha Omicron Pi ~ AOΠ


      Open Motto: “One motto, One Badge, One Bond and Singleness of Heart.”
      Mascot: Panda
      Jewel: Ruby
      Colors: Cardinal
      Flower: Jacqueminot Rose




      Alpha Omicron Pi is a women's fraternity founded on January 2, 1897 -- at Barnard College for women on the campus of Columbia University in New York. Alpha Omicron Pi is a known as a women's fraternity -verses a sorority - because it came into being before the term sorority was commonly used, so it is officially considered a "fraternity for women."

      The four founders Stella George Stern Perry, Helen St. Clair Mullen, Elizabeth Hayward Wyman,  and Jessie Wallace Hughan all met at the Columbia Law library to begin the women's fraternity. The badge was designed by Stella George Stern Perry who would later become Alpha Omicron Pi's president. Within one week of its founding, Alpha Omicron Pi initiated it's very first member, Anne Richardson Hall. These women were friendly, determined and fiercely devoted to one another and their purpose. As noted on the AOΠ website Stella Perry wrote:

       “that which makes our bond is promise certain of success. Let us follow our ensign devotedly, utterly and bravely. For our purpose cannot fail.”

      There are now 189 chapters and 389 alumni chapters in the United States and Canada and it is a member of the National Panhellenic Conference. One of the main priorities of Alpha Omicron Pi is to be of service to others. Their official philanthropy is arthritis, juvenile arthritis and related diseases. It was chosen because arthritis is the leading cause of disability in the nation. It's international foundation has donated over a million dollars to arthritis research and it's members have donated countless hours to local community projects that benefit children the elderly and the less fortunate.

    • Alpha Epsilon Phi

      Alpha Epsilon Phi ~ AEΦ


      Open Motto: “Many hearts. One Purpose.”
      Mascot: Giraffe
      Jewel: Pearl
      Colors: Green and White
      Flower: Lily of the Valley





      In 1909 - at Barnard College - seven Jewish women met to form a "club" that would later become known as the sorority Alpha Epsilon Phi. In the early 1900s it was very rare for women to attend college but in 1907 Barnard College opened its doors to young ladies of well-to-do families. Helen Phillips was the one who came up with the idea of starting the group. She along with Ida Beck, Rose Gerstein, Augustina Hess, Lee Reiss, Stella Strauss, and Rose Salmowitz founded Alpha Epsilon Phi on October 24th, 1909. The women shared common heritage, interests and an appreciation for true friendship. Their goal was to form a group that would help foster lifelong friendship and provide a home away from home for its members.



      Currently Alpha Epsilon Phi has over 100 chapters and over 80,000 initiated members. Although it is a Jewish sorority they are not a religious organization. According the Alpha Epsilon Phi official website "...membership (is) open to all college women, regardless of religion, who honor, respect and appreciate our Jewish identity and are comfortable in a culturally Jewish environment."  Young women who are part of a legacy are given careful consideration when pledging but  it is not guaranteed a bid.

      Philanthropy and service  are a big part of being an Alpha Epsilon Phi member. From the very beginning their focus was to assist Jewish war survivors, provide scholarships and aid in educational endeavors.  While members are involved in many philanthropic projects their two official philanthropic are the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and Sharsheret.



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