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The Ultimate Guide to the National Panhellenic Conference: Part Two


We’re coming down from our patriotic high, A-Listers. These are sad times indeed, as we all mope back from the river, the beach, or the mountains. But what’s keeping us excited during this short week back? Recruitment! We promised Part Two to our Ultimate National Panhellenic Council Chapter Guide—ask and you shall receive! Without further ado, let us introduce our next nine chapters.


  • Nickname: AST (written & spoken); Alpha Sig (written & spoken)
  • Founded: November 4, 1899 at Michigan State Normal College, now Eastern Michigan University, as an educational organization
  • Symbols: Anchor (Symbol); Yellow Rose (Flower); Pearl (Jewel)
  • Philanthropy: Pine Mountain Settlement School (National Philanthropy); Habitat for Humanity (National Service Project); Women’s Wellness Initiative
  • Colors: Emerald Green & Gold
  • Motto: “Active, self-reliant, trustworthy”
  • Tagline: Defining Excellence

Alpha Sigma Tau is the third oldest collegiate educational organization whose badge includes an abstract open book and stars, representing their ties to education. With over 90 chapters nationwide, the sorority emphasizes five core values: intellect, excellence, graciousness, respect, and connections. Alpha Sig prides itself on a long history of service, as exemplified through their many philanthropic endeavors. Their Women’s Wellness Initiative focuses on the wellbeing, both physically and mentally, of its sisters nationwide.


  • Nickname: Chi-O (written & spoken); XO (written)
  • Founded: April 5, 1895 at the University of Arkansas
  • Symbols: Owl (Mascot); Skull & Crossbones (Symbol); White Carnation (Flower)
  • Philanthropy: Make-a-Wish
  • Colors: Straw & Cardinal
  • Motto: “Hellenic Culture & Christian Ideals”
  • Vision Statement: Sisters inspired by our values who serve the world while keeping Chi Omega ever at heart.

Like some of its predecessors, Chi Omega was established with the help of a male founder and thus considers itself a fraternity. Chi-O is the largest organization in the NPC system; they initiated their 300,000th member in 2010, and remains the first sorority to reach that milestone. Currently, their membership totals over 320,000. With six pillars in their mission statement—friendship, personal integrity, service to others, academic excellence & intellectual pursuits, community & campus involvement, and personal & career development—Chi Omega currently has over 178 active chapters.


  • Nickname: Tri Delta (written & spoken)
  • Founded: November 28, 1888 at Boston University
  • Symbols: Dolphins (Mascot); Trident (Symbol); Pearl (Jewel); Pansy (Flower); Poseidon (Patron God); Pine (Symbol & Tree)
  • Philanthropy: St. Jude’s Children Research Hospital
  • Colors: Silver, Gold, & Cerulean Blue
  • Motto: “Let us, steadfastly  love one another”
  • Tagline: Perpetual Bond of Friendship

Delta Delta Delta, or Tri Delta as it is most commonly referred to both spoken and written, was the first women’s group to organize nationally. They were also the first to organize alumnae chapters and hold a national conference that allowed for sisters across the country to meet each other. Tri Delta currently has over 137 active chapters internationally, and as of 2015, Tri Delta has raised over $15 million nationwide and throughout Canada for children’s cancer research in partnership with St. Jude’s Children Hospital.


  • Nickname: DG (written & spoken); DeeGee (written); Delta Gam (spoken)
  • Founded: December 25, 1873 at the Lewis School for Girls, now the University of Mississippi (aka “Ole Miss”)
  • Symbols: Anchor (Symbol); Cream Rose (Flower)
  • Philanthropy: Service for Sight
  • Colors: Bronze, Pink & Blue
  • Motto: “Do Good”

Delta Gamma’s core value, and for which their letters were chosen, is to “do good.” With integrity, professionalism, collaboration, and learning/growth as their principle qualities for a prospective sister, Delta Gamma has 148 collegiate groups in the United States and Canada. With the help of a Phi Delta Theta brother (the sorority’s only male initiate), Delta Gamma successfully expanded from the south, to the north, and finally to the east. DG is also the only sorority to have their flower officially registered with the American Rose Society: Delta Gamma Cream Rose.


  • Nickname: D-Phi-E (spoken & written)
  • Founded: March 17, 1917 at New York University Law School, the only sorority to be founded at a graduate school
  • Symbols: Unicorn (Mascot); Pearl (Jewel); Iris (Flower)
  • Philanthropy: Anorexia Nervosa Awareness; Cystic Fibrosis Foundation; Delta Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation
  • Colors: Royal Purple & Pure Gold
  • Motto: “To be, rather than to seem to be”

Delta Phi Epsilon is an international sorority, with two chapters in Canada. D-Phi-E boasts a plethora of alumnae who have achieved great accolades, ranging from a First Lady of Israel to the first female president of an Ivy League university. The sorority has a mission statement that reads, “To provide a sisterhood experience rich with tradition, innovation and opportunities for growth.” Their vision statement also supplements, “mobilizing dynamic women to influence and impact communities.” Overall, D-Phi-E has over 106 active chapters through North America.


  • Nickname: DZ (written & spoken)
  • Founded: October 24, 1902 at Miami University in Ohio, the first sorority founded on that campus
  • Symbols: Turtle (Mascot); Roman Lamp (Symbol & Badge); Pink Killarney Rose (Flower); Diamond (Jewel)
  • Philanthropy: The Painted Turtle Camp; Speech and Hearing Awareness
  • Colors: Rose & Green
  • Tagline: Truly

Delta Zeta joined NPC in 1910 and currently has 165 chapters in the United States and Canada. Formally partnered with the Starkey Hearing Foundation, Delta Zetas nationwide hold an annual “Hike for Hearing” to raise awareness and funds for their philanthropy. The sorority was founded with the help of the university president, a brother of Phi Delta Theta, who guided the original women in organizing in a formal Greek system. DZ is the third largest sorority in the country following Chi Omega and Alpha Delta Pi.


  • Nickname: Gamma Phi (written & spoken); G-Phi (written); G-Phi-B (written)
  • Founded: November 11, 1874 at Syracuse University; also part of the Syracuse Triad with Alpha Phi and Alpha Gamma Delta
  • Symbols: Crescent Moon (Symbol & Badge); Pearl (Jewel); Pink Carnation (Flower)
  • Philanthropy: Building Strong Girls
  • Colors: Brown & Mode
  • Motto: “Founded Upon a Rock”

Gamma Phi Beta was first to use the term “sorority” to mean a group of women exclusively in the Greek system. Their badge, designed by Tiffany & Co. in the late 19th century, uses their widely recognized symbol, the crescent moon. Until 2014, Gamma Phi Beta’s national philanthropy was Camp Fire USA and Girl Guides of Canada; the sorority had raised significant funds for both causes. At Convention in 2012, the sorority adopted a new philanthropy, Building Strong Girls, announcing a formal partnership with Girls on the Run, Inc. Their mission is to “provide experiences and resources that build spiritual, mental, and social resiliency in girls.”


  • Nickname: KAO (written); KAT (written); Theta (written & spoken)
  • Founded: January 27, 1870 at DePauw University
  • Symbols: Kite (Symbol); Twin Stars (Symbol); Yellow & Gold Pansy (Flower)
  • Philanthropy: Court Appointed Special Advocates
  • Colors: Black & Gold
  • Motto: “Leading Women”

Kappa Alpha Theta was the first all-female Greek Letter organization, founded in 1870. The original founder, Bettie Locke, was inspired by the exclusive membership of her brother’s fraternity, Phi Gamma Delta (FIJI), and created a fraternity that women could become full fledged members of. Locke also drew inspiration from her father’s fraternity, Beta Theta Pi. For the past 25 years, Theta and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) have worked together to bring children who are wards of the state and adult mentors together in order to build memorable experiences and to ensure all legal decisions made are in the child’s best interest. In the end, CASA’s goal is to find forever homes for the children it helps.


  • Nickname: KD (written & spoken); KayDee (written)
  • Founded: October 23, 1897 at State Female Normal School of Virginia, now known as Longwood University
  • Symbols: Nautilus Shell (Symbol); Teddy Bear (Mascot); Dagger (Symbol); Katydid (Mascot); White Rose (Flower); Diamond, Emerald, & Pearl (Jewels)
  • Philanthropy: Girl Scouts of the USA
  • Colors: Olive Green & Pearl White
  • Motto: “Let us strive for that which is honorable, beautiful and highest”

Kappa Delta has over 161 active chapters with membership reaching 230,000 women nationwide. The sorority’s mission statement calls for members to reach their full potential and urges lifelong community service, active leadership, and respectful citizenship. Their principles include truth, honor, of duty, and true friendship. Notable alumnae of KD include Nobel Prize winners, a NASA Space Shuttle Astronaut, and fashion designers. Kappa Delta also boasts a high standard of membership, urging all members to hold each other accountable and live with integrity.

Thanks for reading the second installment of our NPC Chapter Guide! Stay tuned next week for Part 3! Until next time, A-Listers!