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Phi Beta Kappa

Phi Beta Kappa key and motto: Love of Wisdom, the guide of life

The Phi Beta Kappa Society is the oldest preeminent collegiate honor society for the liberal arts in the United States. Established in 1776 at the College of William and Mary, Phi Beta Kappa now comprises 283 chapters throughout the United States. Induction into Phi Beta Kappa represents a strong love of learning through diligence and academic merit.

In 1994, the American University Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, Zeta of Washington, D.C., was founded. It is a force for the three goods indicated by the stars in the upper left corner of the society's key: friendship, morality, and literature. The pointing hand in the lower corner of the key symbolizes aspiration. On the reverse, the letters S and P represent the second name of the society, Societas Philosophiae, which translates as "the society of the love of knowledge." American University is well suited to cultivate the virtues of Phi Beta Kappa. With the intimacy of a smaller college and strong intellectual enterprises, students at American University are able to pursue rewarding studies in the liberal arts.

Selection Procedure

Election is highly selective. It is based on performance as measured by GPA in liberal arts courses. All other courses (for example, pre-professional classes or internships) are excluded from the calculation. Students from most programs in the College of Arts and Sciences, as well as from the School of International Service and School of Public Affairs, are potentially eligible, provided the number of credits and GPA for liberal arts courses are sufficient. Students enrolled in majors in the School of Communication, the Kogod School of Business, and the School of Education are not eligible unless they have a second major in a qualifying liberal arts program. Induction represents lifetime membership. Students must have 75 percent of their work in liberal arts courses and at least 60 credits earned in courses at American University. Students who are eligible either in their junior or more often senior year will be notified during spring semester if elected. There are no applications.

Dinner and Induction Ceremony

Each spring American University's Zeta Chapter welcomes new members through a dinner in their honor. Parents, friends, and faculty members are typically invited to attend both the induction ceremony and the reception that follows.

Congratulations 2015-16 Inductees!

  • Bailey Adams
  • Toby Joseph Amodeo
  • Ronah Hoyle Baha
  • Jennifer Makanani Bell
  • Courtney Belme
  • Kianna Billman
  • Magda Borgarelli
  • Amanda Regina Brenner
  • Alison Kaylee Brown
  • Olivia Marie Bullock
  • Emily Alison Cairns
  • Alaa Chaker
  • William Lee Clawges
  • Cass Bliss Clemmer
  • Marieka Cober
  • Chandler Coniglio
  • Grant William Conway
  • Taylor Claire Cox
  • Julia Marie D'Amico
  • Jessica Esther Dawson
  • Victoria Anne Donnelly
  • Leah Elisabeth Dunn
  • Melissa Ruth Dworkin
  • Julia Rose Faett
  • Hannah Pauline Friedman
  • Maria Chiara Gabellieri
  • Devki Gami
  • Emily Ann Gerardi
  • Jordyn Alexandra Giannone
  • Caroline Michelle Gomez
  • Claudia P. Gonzalez
  • Kyle S. Graczyk
  • Rachael Elizabeth Groat
  • Jordan Clark Halsey
  • Catherine Leigh Harlos
  • Meredith Breese Hiles
  • Pamela Huber
  • Paul Madison Jeffries
  • Brittany Carroll Jones
  • Claire Karlsson
  • Justyna Kepa
  • Austin James Krug
  • Alex Laplaza
  • Brittany Larson
  • Rebecca Lassman
  • Aliya Hannah Levinstein
  • Larry Li
  • Madeleine Lowe
  • Katherine Rose McCauley
  • Zoe Mize
  • John Richard Nagle
  • Anne Rosa Norland
  • Thomas Daniel Page
  • Pooja Patel
  • Rahi Naresh Patel
  • Emmett Alexander Patterson
  • Eliana Z. Peck
  • Megan Taylor Piccirillo
  • Cassidy Morgan Pont
  • Brian Alexander Pouy
  • Elizabeth Preuss
  • Roshni Rajan
  • Jackie Ramsay
  • Patrick A. Reed
  • Valerie Rennoll
  • Nicolas Fred Rice
  • Dorian Russell
  • Elin Ryd
  • Alexa Danielle Schneider
  • Cameron Kayla Schuette
  • Caroline Sell
  • Jonathon M. Shapiro
  • Benjamin Dylan Sherman
  • Victoria Leigh Shimkus
  • Tara Shreve
  • Alexandra Rose Shults
  • Matthew Raymond Skorski
  • Jeremy Tyler Smith
  • Tanya Smith-Sreen
  • Genevieve Stegner-Freitag
  • Tyler Steinhardt
  • Kyle Svendsen
  • Miyako Takashima
  • Natalie Tarasar
  • Elizabeth Courtney Thorne
  • Vinh Quang To
  • Deborah Melissa Collazo Torrellas
  • David Troy
  • Veronica Maria Vazquez Ugalde
  • Andrea Claire Walton
  • Amber Nicole Waltz
  • Matthew Paul Waskiewicz
  • Kevin Spoehrer Werner
  • Elizabeth Westbrook
  • Emma Whalen
  • Lucas Alexander Wright
  • Lindsay Wylie


Current Faculty & Staff

  • David Aaronson
  • Jaime Abrams
  • Evelyn Abravanel  
  • Padideh Ala'i
  • Patricia Aufderheide
  • Karen Baehler
  • Naomi Susan Baron  
  • Robin Barr  
  • Robert Beisner  
  • Barbara Bergmann  
  • Evan Berry
  • Amanda Berry
  • Robert Allen Blecker  
  • Aaron P. Boesenecker
  • David Bosco
  • Deborah Brautigam  
  • Richard Breitman  
  • Robin Broad  
  • Norma Broude  
  • Laura Cutler
  • Linda Chase  
  • Christine B. N. Chin
  • Angie Chuang
  • Allison Comins-Richmond  
  • David Crosby  
  • Angela Davis
  • Robert Dinerstein 
  • Jeremiah Dittmar
  • Lynda Dodd  
  • Erik Dussere  
  • Amy Eisman
  • Mary Fan
  • Eileen Findlay
  • G. Borden Flanagan
  • Lynn Fox  
  • Mary Garrard  
  • Mary Gray  
  • Robert Griffith  
  • Lewis Grossman  
  • Jane Hall  
  • Charley Hardwick  
  • Kate Haulman
  • William Hirzy
  • Daphon D. Ho
  • Travis Hodges
  • Heather Hughes
  • LaVelma Hughes  
  • Patrick Jackson  
  • Peter Jaszi  
  • Kristing Kalanges
  • Elizabeth Keith
  • Sarah Cleeland Knight
  • Alan Kraut  
  • Peter Kuznick  
  • Elizabeth Lang  
  • Jennifer Lawless
  • Adrea Lawrence 
  • Benjamin Leff
  • William LeoGrande
  • Robert Lerman
  • Allan Lichtman  
  • Adrienne Lockie
  • Jonathan Loesberg  
  • Eric Lohr  
  • David Lublin  
  • Linda Lubrano  
  • Jeremy Lupoli
  • Daniel Marcus  
  • Margaret Marr  
  • James May  
  • Mieke Meurs  
  • Binny Miller  
  • Kermit Moyer  
  • Shoon Murray  
  • Kay Mussell  
  • Robert Pastor
  • Lynne Perri
  • Andrew Pike  
  • Leanne Powner
  • Naima Prevots  
  • Anthony Quainton
  • Jack Ramsay
  • Jamin Raskin  
  • Jeffrey Reiman  
  • Anthony Riley  
  • Ira Robbins  
  • Bernard Rosen  
  • Roberta Rubenstein  
  • Joshua Sarnoff  
  • Mark Schaeffer
  • Kathy Schwartz
  • Phillip H. Scribner  
  • April Shelford  
  • Anita Sherman  
  • Suzanne Smith
  • Peter Starr
  • Leonard Steinhorn  
  • Jane Stoever  
  • Patricia Sykes  
  • Kristina Thompson
  • Mary Siegel Trotter
  • Robert Tsai
  • Robert Vaughn
  • David Vine
  • Rangeley Wallace
  • Paul Wapner  
  • Jessica Waters
  • Michael Wenthe  
  • Brenda Werth  
  • Robin Westbrook  
  • John White  
  • Donald Williamson  
  • John Willoughby  
  • Andrew Yarrow


Faculty and staff representing many departments and schools are members of American University's chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. The chapter's current officers are:

President - Mary Gray, Professor, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, College of Arts and Sciences

Vice President - Amanda Berry, Assistant Professor, Department of Literature, College of Arts and Sciences

Secretary - Patrick Thadeus Jackson, Associate Dean for Curriculum and Learning, School of International Service

Treasurer - Donald Williamson, Professor, Department of Accounting and Taxation, Kogod School of Business

Historian - Kate Haulman, Associate Professor, Department of History, College of Arts and Sciences

Members-at-Large - Patricia Sykes, Associate Professor, Department of Government, School of Public Affairs

Robin Broad, Professor, School of International Service


For more information please contact:

Mimi Fittig,, 202-885-2436