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The Phi Kappa Phi Society is the nation's oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. The Society's mission is to recognize and promote academic excellence in all fields of higher education and to engage the community of scholars in service to others. Phi Kappa Phi aims to celebrate upperclassmen and graduate students who prove to be strong scholars throughout their academic careers. 

How to Join

Phi Kappa Phi is the most selective honor society for all academic disciplines. Membership is by invitation only to second-semester juniors, seniors, and graduate students. To be eligible, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Be an undergraduate student in any department of a college or university having a Phi Kappa Phi chapter who have completed at least twenty-four (24) semester hours or the equivalent at that institution.

  • Juniors must have completed at least seventy-two (72) credit hours and rank scholastically in the top 7.5 percent of their class.

  • Seniors must rank in the top 10 percent of their class.

  • Graduate students must rank in the upper 10 percent of their class.

  • Faculty, professional staff, and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction also may be eligible for membership.

Students who accept their invitation to join this honorary organization are initiated at an annual ceremony. All members receive a personalized certificate and official Phi Kappa Phi pin at the initiation ceremony. Following the ceremony is a reception where initiates can meet fellow Phi Kappa Phi members. The first initiation ceremony was held on April 27, 2009.


In 1897, 10 senior students, two faculty members and the University of Maine president created a new kind of honor society, one that recognized excellence in all academic disciplines covering a wider range of students than any other honor society in existence at that time.

In 1900, the Society was renamed Phi Kappa Phi from the letters of the Greek words forming its motto, Philosophía Krateítõ Phõtôn, "Let the love of learning rule humanity" and gained support from the presidents of Pennsylvania State College and the University of Tennessee to expand into a national organization. Today, the Society has chapters on more than 325 campuses in the United States, its territories and the Philippines.

Learn more about the history of Phi Kappa Phi here.

Scholarships & Awards

Since 1932, Phi Kappa Phi has supported the educational pursuits of its members through robust award and grant programs. The Society awards  $1.3 million each year to outstanding students, members, chapters and institutions.

Below are highlighted awards and scholarships, learn more about all available funding opportunities at:


Pioneer Award

Pioneer Awards are designed to encourage and reward undergraduate members for developing the research, engagement and leadership skills necessary to become a successful scholar. Fifty $1,000 awards are distributed annually.

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Study Abroad

One hundred twenty-five $1,000 grants are awarded each year and support undergraduates as they seek knowledge and experience in their academic fields by studying abroad.

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Graduate Fellowships

Fifty-four Fellowships of $8,500 each, six at $20,000 each and two at $35,000 each are awarded to members entering the first year of graduate or professional study.

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Excellence in Innovation

Awarded once per biennium, the $100,000 award recognizes colleges and universities for their achievements in finding powerful answers to important local, regional, national or global challenges.

Learn More

Contact Us

Patricia Whitlow

C. Lynn Hiler

Student Vice Presidents
Eric Fitzpatrick

Kayli Bolton

General Information:

Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence

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224 Funkhouser Building