Frostburg State Accepted for Chapter of America’s Oldest, Most-Selective Honor Society

Dec 6, 2017 12:20 PM

Frostburg State University has been accepted to form a chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, America’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Founded in 1897, the society inducts about 30,000 members from 300-plus colleges and universities each year. Frostburg’s chapter will initiate its first members in spring of 2018.

Frostburg’s Phi Kappa Phi chapter is coordinated by Dr. Gregory Wood, associate professor of history and director of FSU’s Honors Program.

“The new chapter of Phi Kappa Phi at FSU will provide a wonderful opportunity for our best students to receive the high academic honor that they definitely deserve,” said Wood. “Membership in Phi Kappa Phi is a unique privilege that is not available to every good student in the United States. Instead, this honor is something that only the very best can receive. It's a very select membership, and now FSU students will become a part of it.”

FSU counts several Phi Kappa Phi members among its faculty and administration, including President Ronald Nowaczyk.

“The contacts and opportunities I’ve found through Phi Kappa Phi have been an asset throughout my career,” Nowaczyk said. “The society’s openness to all disciplines results in an intellectually diverse assembly of scholars and leaders, all united in a mutual commitment to academic excellence and service to others.”

Phi Kappa Phi’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.” That mission is reflected in its motto: “Let the love of learning rule humanity.”

The standards for election in Phi Kappa Phi are extremely rigorous, with membership by invitation only. Eligibility is restricted to juniors ranking in the top 7.5 percent of their class; seniors ranking in the top 10 percent of their class; or outstanding faculty, professional staff and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction.

Past and present members include President Jimmy Carter, U.S. cabinet members, college presidents, bestselling authors, U.S. Supreme Court justices and numerous other accomplished individuals.

Following an initiation ceremony on campus, members receive an initiation certificate and official Phi Kappa Phi pin; a personalized member card; recognition from the society; and the privilege of wearing the society’s medallion, honor cords and stole at commencement.

The society issues $1.4 million in prestigious grants and awards to accomplished members on a biennial basis. It offers valuable career resources, internship opportunities and member networking events. Members also receive several Phi Kappa Phi publications and access to member-only discount programs.

To learn more about the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, visit For more information about FSU’s new Phi Kappa Phi chapter, contact Wood at

Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 12 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland. For more information, visit or Follow FSU on Twitter @frostburgstate.