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Phi Beta Kappa

Phi Beta Kappa at Spelman

Epsilon of Georgia

"Philosophy (wisdom) is the Guide of Life."

Epsilon of Georgia is the Spelman College chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Society

Efforts to establish a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa at Spelman College began with a preliminary application in 1976 followed by preliminary applications in 1985 and 1994. The 1994 preliminary application was approved and full application was made on September 28, 1995 by the Phi Beta Kappa Group. 

After a rigorous application process, which included the submission of a 157-page General Report and a three-day site visit, Spelman was granted a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa on September 27, 1997 at the Thirty-Eighth Triennial Meeting of the Phi Beta Kappa Council in Chicago. The chapter, Epsilon of Georgia, was installed on February 10, 1998 by David Levering Lewis, Ph.D., Martin Luther King, Jr. University Professor of History, Rutgers University.

Lewis remarked, "I should like to believe that Phi Beta Kappa's coming to Spelman is fatefully symbolic and represents a milestone in the progress of the life of the mind and of the 'love of learning' (Phi Beta Kappa's motto, indeed) among that half of humanity to whom the nation must turn increasingly for the mediation and attenuation of that patriarchal, racist, sexist and aggressive past that it so urgently needs to escape."

The chapter's first initiation ceremony was held April 28, 1998, to induct its first group of 44 undergraduate members. Since then, more than 500 members have been inducted into the Epsilon of Georgia chapter. 

Phi Beta Kappa History   |  Membership Criteria


Author Pearl Cleage
Pearl Cleage C'71 is an accomplished playwright, journalist, poet and novelist, Spelman alumna and Atlanta-based writer. Her subsequent novels have been consistent best sellers and perennial book club favorites. Cleage's work occupies a unique niche in contemporary African-American fiction. Her characters are as complex and multi-faceted as her readers lives and their balancing of work, love and family (not necessarily in that order) ring true to those who eagerly await each novel. She balances issues as challenging as AIDS, domestic violence and urban blight, but the distinguishing features of her books are her optimism, her commitment to positive change and transformation, and her unwavering faith in the possibility and power of romantic love. Along with best selling awards and recognitions, Pearl Cleage adds Phi Beta Kappa to her list of honors.

Re'me'sh Adams
Abiana Adamson*
LaMani Adkins
Ebonie Aghahowa
Jordan Branch*
Kailyn Brooks
Rajane' Brown
Shelley Cobb
Kayla Dean
Krislyn Domingue
Chelesa Fearce
Erin Ferguson
Lauren Fleming
Arianna Goolsby
Ayana Hart
Endia Hayes
Micah Henson
Amber Hobbs
Amani Holder*
Jaya Johnson
Symone Johnson
Ciara Jones
Modester Kamupinda
Tiara Lacey*
Easlynn Lee
Kelsye Little
Kimya Loder*
Alaya Martin
Ariel McAphee
Monica McGee
Gqwetha Ncube
Mirabella Nwaka
Terri O'Neal
Asia Payne
Olivia Pearson
Lexus Phillips
Princeanna Price
Grace Reid
Courtney Roberts
Lauren Ruffin
Simone Sawyer
Elizabeth Sengoba
Shelby Smith
Dru Spiller
Parris Washington
Kyana Waters
Irris Williams
Martine Williams
Taylor Williams-Hamilton
* Juniors

Induction Ceremony 2015

Phi Beta Kappa Induction Ceremoony 2015Phi Beta Delta Induction Ceremony
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Charter Members

  • Estelle Archibold (Finley)
  • Sylvia Bozeman
  • Michael Burns-Kaurin
  • Barbara Carter
  • Alonzo Crim
  • Bryan Derrickson
  • Etta Falconer
  • Beverly Guy-Sheftall
  • Donna Akiba Harper
  • Derrick Hylton
  • Nancy Mukundan
  • Anne Warner
  • Daryl White

Foundation Members

  • Pamela Gunter-Smith
  • Harry Lefever
  • Arturo Lindsay
  • Audrey Forbes Manley
  • Paul Roy Martinez
  • Gloria Wade-Gayles

Alumnae Members

  • Marian Wright Edelman
  • Evelynn Hammonds
  • Sylvia Lewis Hylton
  • Selena Harper McLaurin
  • Mona Taylor Phillips
  • Jann Primus
  • Pamela Stegall

Honorary Members

  • Peter Chen
  • Beverly Daniel Tatum
  • M. Bahati Kuumba
  • Christine Sizemore