Kappa Kappa Gamma
Overview
 
Kappa Kappa Gamma is a collegiate women's fraternity
Fraternities and sororities
Fraternities and sororities are fraternal social organizations for undergraduate students. In Latin, the term refers mainly to such organizations at colleges and universities in the United States, although it is also applied to analogous European groups also known as corporations...

, founded at Monmouth College
Monmouth College
Monmouth College is a four-year coeducational private liberal arts college located in Monmouth, Illinois, United States.-History:Monmouth College was founded on April 18, 1853 by the Second Presbytery of Illinois, a frontier arm of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church...

, in Monmouth, Illinois
Monmouth, Illinois
Monmouth is a city in and the county seat of Warren County in the U.S. state of Illinois. It is the home of Monmouth College and contains Monmouth Park, Harmon Park, North Park, Warfield Park, West Park, South Park, Garwood Park, Buster White Park and the Citizens Lake & Campground. It is the host...

, USA. Although the groundwork of the organization was developed as early as 1869, the 1876 Convention voted that October 13, 1870 should be recognized at the official Founders Day, because no earlier charter date could be determined. This makes Kappa Kappa Gamma one of the oldest women's Greek-letter societies in existence today.

Kappa has a total membership of more than 240,000 women, with 138 collegiate chapters in the United States and Canada and 307 alumnae associations worldwide.

Kappa Kappa Gamma is a women's fraternity, because it was founded before the term 'sorority' came into use.
Encyclopedia
Kappa Kappa Gamma is a collegiate women's fraternity
Fraternities and sororities
Fraternities and sororities are fraternal social organizations for undergraduate students. In Latin, the term refers mainly to such organizations at colleges and universities in the United States, although it is also applied to analogous European groups also known as corporations...

, founded at Monmouth College
Monmouth College
Monmouth College is a four-year coeducational private liberal arts college located in Monmouth, Illinois, United States.-History:Monmouth College was founded on April 18, 1853 by the Second Presbytery of Illinois, a frontier arm of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church...

, in Monmouth, Illinois
Monmouth, Illinois
Monmouth is a city in and the county seat of Warren County in the U.S. state of Illinois. It is the home of Monmouth College and contains Monmouth Park, Harmon Park, North Park, Warfield Park, West Park, South Park, Garwood Park, Buster White Park and the Citizens Lake & Campground. It is the host...

, USA. Although the groundwork of the organization was developed as early as 1869, the 1876 Convention voted that October 13, 1870 should be recognized at the official Founders Day, because no earlier charter date could be determined. This makes Kappa Kappa Gamma one of the oldest women's Greek-letter societies in existence today.

Kappa has a total membership of more than 240,000 women, with 138 collegiate chapters in the United States and Canada and 307 alumnae associations worldwide.

Kappa Kappa Gamma is a women's fraternity, because it was founded before the term 'sorority' came into use. However, because it admits only women, it is usually referred to as a sorority. Kappa Kappa Gamma is also referred to as "KKG" and "Kappa."

History

The idea of Kappa Kappa Gamma is said to have been conceived in a conversation between two college women, Mary Louise Bennett and Hannah Jeannette Boyd, on a wooden bridge over a stream on the Monmouth College
Monmouth College
Monmouth College is a four-year coeducational private liberal arts college located in Monmouth, Illinois, United States.-History:Monmouth College was founded on April 18, 1853 by the Second Presbytery of Illinois, a frontier arm of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church...

 campus in the late 1860s. Though the coeducational college was considered progressive at the time, the women were dissatisfied with the fact that while men enjoyed membership in fraternities, women had no such equivalent organizations for companionship, support and advancement and were instead limited to literary societies (such as the Monmouth College literary society that became Pi Beta Phi
Pi Beta Phi
Pi Beta Phi is an international fraternity for women founded as I.C. Sorosis on April 28, 1867, at Monmouth College in Monmouth, Illinois. Its headquarters are located in Town and Country, Missouri, and there are 134 active chapters and over 330 alumnae organizations across the United States and...

 women's fraternity in 1867). Bennett and Boyd began to seek "the choicest spirits among the girls, not only for literary work, but also for social development", beginning with their friend Mary Moore Stewart. Stewart, Boyd, and Bennett met around 1869 in the Amateurs des Belles Lettres Hall, a literary society of which the women were active members when they first decided to form a new society. Soon after they recruited three additional women, Anna Elizabeth Willits, Martha Louisa Stevenson, and Susan Burley Walker, to join in founding the fraternity.

The six founders met at the home of Anna Willits to lay the groundwork for the formation of the first chapter of Kappa Kappa Gamma, later known as the Alpha Chapter. It was there that they chose the golden key as their badge and prepared to make their official debut by ordering their badges from Lou Bennett's family jeweler. A formal charter was also drawn up by Minnie Stewart's father, who was an attorney in the state of Illinois.

The six founders declared their intention to organize as a women's fraternity when on October 13, 1870, they marched into the most public venue on campus, the chapel, wearing their golden key badges in their hair. This day is nationally recognized by the fraternity as Founders Day.

In 1871, the young fraternity expanded by chartering their Beta Chapter at nearby St. Mary's Seminary. The next year, the fraternity expanded again to Gamma Chapter at Smithson College and Delta Chapter at Indiana University. Though the Beta and Gamma chapters failed to survive more than a few years, the Delta chapter became the fraternity's oldest continuously active chapter (Alpha was closed in 1874 but later re-established) and contributed a great deal to the organization of the fraternity in its early years.

Since 1870 Kappa has continued to expand and has chartered 160 chapters, 138 of which are active today.

The Monmouth Duo

Pi Beta Phi
Pi Beta Phi
Pi Beta Phi is an international fraternity for women founded as I.C. Sorosis on April 28, 1867, at Monmouth College in Monmouth, Illinois. Its headquarters are located in Town and Country, Missouri, and there are 134 active chapters and over 330 alumnae organizations across the United States and...

 women's fraternity was founded as I.C. Sorosis at Monmouth College
Monmouth College
Monmouth College is a four-year coeducational private liberal arts college located in Monmouth, Illinois, United States.-History:Monmouth College was founded on April 18, 1853 by the Second Presbytery of Illinois, a frontier arm of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church...

 in 1867. Kappa Kappa Gamma was founded at the college in 1870, and in 1888 I.C. Sorosis adopted greek letters and changed its named to Pi Beta Phi. Because both fraternities have their origins at the same college within three years of one another, they are often called The Monmouth Duo. On campuses with Pi Beta Phi and Kappa Kappa Gamma chapters, the groups often hold joint social and philanthropic events.

Membership

In order to join Kappa Kappa Gamma, potential new members must be enrolled at a college or university with an active chapter of the fraternity. They must also have a minimum grade point average (GPA) to be considered eligible. Women must participate in sorority recruitment and if they are issued an invitation to join, they enter the New Member period, the first of three phases of membership. After six to eight weeks, New Members are initiated and enter the second phase of membership as active collegiate members. Upon graduation members enter the third and final phase of membership and become alumnae. Alumnae have the opportunity to join local alumna associations and remain active participants in fraternity life by engaging in social and philanthropic events, volunteering as advisers to collegiate chapters, and serving as fraternity council officers.

Leadership

Collegiate chapters contain a governing body of members that includes a President, Treasurer, Secretary and officers assigned to chapter functions such as membership, standards, events, and philanthropy. Often these officers supervise committees as well. The chapter officers are advised by and report to alumnae volunteers who serve as chapter advisors, traveling chapter consultants, and fraternity council officers.

The national fraternity council consists of eight alumnae women serving as President, Vice President, Treasurer, Director of Alumnae, Director of Chapters, Director of Membership, Director of Programs and Education, and Director of Standards. The fraternity headquarters is located in Columbus, Ohio.

The National Panhellenic Conference

Kappa is a member organization of the National Panhellenic Conference
National Panhellenic Conference
The National Panhellenic Conference , founded in 1902, is an umbrella organization for 26 national women's sororities.Each member group is autonomous as a social, Greek-letter society of college women and alumnae...

 (NPC), an umbrella organization that includes 26 American sororities. Kappa Kappa Gamma is one of the founders of the NPC, which was organized at a meeting of seven sororities in 1902 in an effort to establish guidelines and practices to regulate sorority membership.

Symbols

Kappa Kappa Gamma recognizes the following official fraternity symbols:
  • The badge of membership is the golden key. The standard badge is one inch in length and is sometimes jeweled with sapphires, pearls or diamonds. On the front of the key are the Greek letters ΚΚΓ (on the stem) and ΑΩΟ (on the ward). Often the initials and initiation date of the member to whom the badge belongs are inscribed on the back of the badge. The original keys were larger and were not standardized; many were specially made to the member's specifications, sometimes including stones such as opals. They were also worn on members' lapels, foreheads or hair, whereas today badges are uniformly worn on the left side of the chest. The badge is worn strictly as an emblem of membership and only by initiated members. Members are encouraged to return their badges to fraternity headquarters upon their death.


  • New Members of Kappa Kappa Gamma wear a different badge, a Sigma within a Delta enameled on silver in the two colors of the Fraternity, dark blue and light blue. The new member pin is only worn during the new member period, after which it is returned to the chapter.

  • The fraternity colors are light blue and dark blue.

  • The owl
    Owl
    Owls are a group of birds that belong to the order Strigiformes, constituting 200 bird of prey species. Most are solitary and nocturnal, with some exceptions . Owls hunt mostly small mammals, insects, and other birds, although a few species specialize in hunting fish...

     is the official mascot of Kappa Kappa Gamma. The owl is the symbol of Minerva
    Minerva
    Minerva was the Roman goddess whom Romans from the 2nd century BC onwards equated with the Greek goddess Athena. She was the virgin goddess of poetry, medicine, wisdom, commerce, weaving, crafts, magic...

    , the Roman goddess of wisdom.

  • The fraternity flower, the fleur-de-lis
    Fleur-de-lis
    The fleur-de-lis or fleur-de-lys is a stylized lily or iris that is used as a decorative design or symbol. It may be "at one and the same time, political, dynastic, artistic, emblematic, and symbolic", especially in heraldry...

    , combines the fraternity's colors of dark blue and light blue. Since the fleur-de-lis is a mythical flower, the iris is often substituted for practical purposes.

  • The fraternity jewel is the blue sapphire
    Sapphire
    Sapphire is a gemstone variety of the mineral corundum, an aluminium oxide , when it is a color other than red or dark pink; in which case the gem would instead be called a ruby, considered to be a different gemstone. Trace amounts of other elements such as iron, titanium, or chromium can give...

    . The sapphire is recognized as a symbol of truth, sincerity and constancy.

  • The fraternity Coat of Arms
    Coat of arms
    A coat of arms is a unique heraldic design on a shield or escutcheon or on a surcoat or tabard used to cover and protect armour and to identify the wearer. Thus the term is often stated as "coat-armour", because it was anciently displayed on the front of a coat of cloth...

     combines all the symbols of Kappa Kappa Gamma: the key, the Greek letters, the new-member pin, the fleur-de-lis, the owl, the head of Minerva and the two blues.

Motto

Kappa Kappa Gamma does not have an open motto. However, the fraternity uses "Tradition of Leadership" as a tagline in many fraternity publications.

Philanthropy

Kappa Kappa Gamma supports a three-part Philanthropy program, often referred to as "Philanthropy 1-2-3".
  • The first branch of philanthropy supports the "Kappa family" through the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation, which provides funding for Kappa museums, members-only scholarships, educational and leadership programming, and the Rose McGill fund, which provides emergency financial aid to sisters.
  • The second branch supports the local community by encouraging chapters and alumnae associations to volunteer and raise money for charities in their regions.
  • The third branch encompasses the entire Fraternity through its national Philanthropy, Reading is Fundamental
    Reading Is Fundamental
    Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. is the oldest and largest nonprofit literacy organization in the United States. Founded in 1966, it is based in Washington, D. C.. RIF's community volunteers in every state and U.S. territory provide 4.5 million children with 16 million new, free books and literacy...

     (RIF). The fraternity officially adopted RIF, which works to promote literacy in children, as the national philanthropy in 2004.

Kappa Timeline and Fraternity Firsts

  • In 1882 Kappa Kappa Gamma was the first women's fraternity to publish a quarterly journal
    Magazine
    Magazines, periodicals, glossies or serials are publications, generally published on a regular schedule, containing a variety of articles. They are generally financed by advertising, by a purchase price, by pre-paid magazine subscriptions, or all three...

     – The Key.
  • In 1891 Kappa Kappa Gamma was the first to call a meeting of all the other women's fraternities – thus the precursor to the National Panhellenic Conference
    National Panhellenic Conference
    The National Panhellenic Conference , founded in 1902, is an umbrella organization for 26 national women's sororities.Each member group is autonomous as a social, Greek-letter society of college women and alumnae...

    .
  • In 1942 Kappa was the first women's fraternity to set up Service Women's Centers during World War II.
  • In 1952 Kappa Kappa Gamma was the first to purchase a Headquarters building, and base their operations permanently in Columbus, Ohio
    Columbus, Ohio
    Columbus is the capital of and the largest city in the U.S. state of Ohio. The broader metropolitan area encompasses several counties and is the third largest in Ohio behind those of Cleveland and Cincinnati. Columbus is the third largest city in the American Midwest, and the fifteenth largest city...

    .
  • In 1965, University of Pittsburgh
    University of Pittsburgh
    The University of Pittsburgh, commonly referred to as Pitt, is a state-related research university located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. Founded as Pittsburgh Academy in 1787 on what was then the American frontier, Pitt is one of the oldest continuously chartered institutions of...

     Kappas were the first to share a house with another fraternity, Kappa Alpha Theta
    Kappa Alpha Theta
    Kappa Alpha Theta , also known as Theta, is an international fraternity for women founded on January 27, 1870 at DePauw University, formerly Indiana Asbury...

    .
  • In 1980 The Heritage Museum was established, and Kappa became the first fraternity to own a museum.
  • In 1989 The Minnie Stewart Foundation purchased the Stewart family home, which was then merged into the Kappa Kappa Gamma Foundation in 2000. Kappa is the only women's fraternity to own the home of a Founder and operate two historic house museums.
  • In 2000 Kappa Kappa Gamma launched Pathways – Kappa’s Continuous Education Experience, leading men's and women's fraternities into new frontiers of education and training.
  • In 2002 Kappa Kappa Gamma released The Voyage of Discovery, a virtual tour
    Virtual Tour
    A virtual tour is a simulation of an existing location, usually composed of a sequence of video images. They also may use other multimedia elements such as sound effects, music, narration, and text....

     through women's history.
  • In 2004 The Leadership Academy began offering undergraduate and alumna members intensive leadership development at an outdoor weekend retreat. Programming for the Leadership Academy has been developed in partnership with The Tompeters! Company and Bradford Woods, an outdoor education
    Outdoor education
    Outdoor education usually refers to organized learning that takes place in the outdoors. Outdoor education programs sometimes involve residential or journey-based experiences in which students participate in a variety of adventurous challenges in the form of outdoor activities such as hiking,...

     facility in Indiana. More recently, Leadership Academy has taken place at Heartland Conference Retreat Center in Marengo, Ohio, near the Columbus, Ohio Fraternity Headquarters.
  • In 2009 Kappa Kappa Gamma launched the Kappa Learning Institute, an interactive online portal which provides free e-courses to active members and alumnae.

Hazing

In 1997 the television show 20/20 featured an expose on hazing
Hazing
Hazing is a term used to describe various ritual and other activities involving harassment, abuse or humiliation used as a way of initiating a person into a group....

 in the sorority system that included a hazing by
three members of Kappa Kappa Gamma at DePauw University
DePauw University
DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, USA, is a private, national liberal arts college with an enrollment of approximately 2,400 students. The school has a Methodist heritage and was originally known as Indiana Asbury University. DePauw is a member of both the Great Lakes Colleges Association...

 and a local sorority Lambda Delta Sigma
Lambda Delta Sigma
Lambda Delta Sigma may refer to:*Lambda Delta Sigma : a sorority at Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota; founded in 1919*Lambda Delta Sigma : a sorority founded in 1960 for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ; now replaced with the LDS Student Association at all...

 at Concordia College. The three members of Kappa Kappa Gamma, on November 6, 1997, were accused of branding 3 pledges with cigarettes in a family hazing rite after a night of heavy drinking. After being burned the pledges were encouraged to streak across campus and to grovel for cigarettes at a fraternity house. The result was severe enough to send one of the pledges to the hospital with minor burn injuries.

The discovery of the incident caused investigations by the sorority and campus to be launched. The members who were involved with the incident were not charged by the state of Indiana
Indiana
Indiana is a US state, admitted to the United States as the 19th on December 11, 1816. It is located in the Midwestern United States and Great Lakes Region. With 6,483,802 residents, the state is ranked 15th in population and 16th in population density. Indiana is ranked 38th in land area and is...

 with criminal recklessness under the hazing statute, as had been reported. They did however face a possible trial for alcohol possession but due to difficulty proving who provided the alcohol the members were given community service instead. DePauw's reaction to the hazing for the chapter was to put the chapter on social probation until Fall 1999 and cut its pledge class in half for two years. The thirteen members who had been either been involved with the incident or had known about it were given one-semester suspensions and social probation for their participation, and were voted by their chapter to retain membership within the chapter.

Bruce Ivins

Bruce Ivins, the senior bio-defense researcher at United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases
United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases
The U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases is the U.S Army’s main institution and facility for defensive research into countermeasures against biological warfare. It is located on Fort Detrick, Maryland and is a subordinate lab of the U. S...

 (USAMRIID) who is alleged to have been driven to suicide by unfounded allegations that he was the "sole perpetrator of the 2001 anthrax attacks
2001 anthrax attacks
The 2001 anthrax attacks in the United States, also known as Amerithrax from its Federal Bureau of Investigation case name, occurred over the course of several weeks beginning on Tuesday, September 18, 2001, one week after the September 11 attacks. Letters containing anthrax spores were mailed to...

," reportedly had a "long and strange obsession" with Kappa Kappa Gamma, as well as with other fraternities such as Chi Omega
Chi Omega
Chi Omega is a women's fraternity and the largest member of the National Panhellenic Conference. Chi Omega has 174 active collegiate chapters and over 230 alumnae chapters. Chi Omega's national headquarters is located in Memphis, Tennessee....

. The letters containing anthrax
Anthrax
Anthrax is an acute disease caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Most forms of the disease are lethal, and it affects both humans and other animals...

 spores (which eventually killed 5 people and injured dozens more) were mailed from a drop box approximately 300 feet from a KKG storage facility at Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

, and only 60 feet from the KKG office.

Additionally, Ivins was noted for repeated editing of Kappa Kappa Gamma's Wikipedia article, unsuccessfully attempting to include derogatory information (under the Wikipedia username Jimmyflathead). (It deserves mention that on several occasions, he also contributed verifiable information and clarity to this article.)

Collegiate Chapters

  • Kappa Kappa Gamma has chartered a total of 160 chapters, 30 of which the fraternity has closed. Eight of the 30 closed chapters have been rechartered, and none of the rechartered chapters have been closed.
  • Active chapters exist in 41 of the 50 states and in the District of Columbia; and in 3 of the 10 Canadian provinces
  • The state with the largest number of active chapters is California
    California
    California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

    , with 16 active chapters and 1 inactive chapter. Kappa has active chapters at all 9 of the University of California
    University of California
    The University of California is a public university system in the U.S. state of California. Under the California Master Plan for Higher Education, the University of California is a part of the state's three-tier public higher education system, which also includes the California State University...

    undergraduate campuses.
  • The fraternity's most expansionary year was 1929, with 6 new chapters chartered
  • The fraternity's most expansionary decades were the 1980's, in which 19 chapters were chartered, and the 1920's, in which 18 chapters where chartered and 1 chapter was rechartered
  • The fraternity's least expansionary decades were the 1890's, in which 5 chapters were chartered and 1 chapter was rechartered, and the 1960's, in which 6 chapters were chartered
  • The decade with the largest number of chapter closures was the 1880's, with 6 chapters closed

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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