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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 2013-14 Inductees!

Zachary Baldwin Kyung Eun Kim
Bryana Banashefski Miki Kobayashi
Richard Bartoldus Joseph Lacey
Sebastian Beckmann William Lawther
Lucy Bertocci Amy Leazes
Conor Bigley Milea Lind
Sarah Blahovec Emma Lydon
Nicholas Blake Alison Martin
Erica Bogese Samantha Matthews
Starr Brainard Stephen Maurer
Cienna Breen Laura McDonald
Emily Brincka Lillian McGee
Katarina Brunette Kathryn Meyer
Kacey Buderi Nellie Mitchell
Nicole Burnett Anna Naser
John Caddock Jacob Nieb
Kathleen Calcerano Marykathryn Odean
Amanda Clark Zoe Orfanos
Chelsea Cohen Stephanie Pan
Alexander Cvitan Michael Panek
Alison Didonato Joseph Payne
Jessica Dubow Alison Pease
Zachary Duey Christina Pierpaoli
Jennifer Dumiak Scott Piraino
Moira Esson Sarah Prostko
Gabrielle Favorito Erin Randall
Sarah Feder Erica Reinhard
Julie Fisher Roxane Reynolds
Alyssa Franke Catalina Rincon
Stephen Fredericks Aubrey Rose
Monika Gasiorek Jennifer Ross
Logan Gilstrap Anna Sebastian
Jessica Gioe Evan Senie
Matthew Goldberg Derek Siegel
Kathryn Grossman Matthew Skic
Kayla Haran Jacob Stack
Chelsea Heidt John Szeltner
Kaitlyn Hoey Nicholas Taber
Jennifer Holthaus Brandon Thaler
Emma Horvath Samantha Turetsky
Genevieve Hull Julianna Twiggs
Katherine Hyde Tedi Velo
Katherine Imbalzano Mark Verdi
Dorothy Joseph Mollie Wagoner
Margaret Kearns Christine Weidner
Alexander Khoury Erin Wuebbens
Justin Kiel Nyousha Yousefi

Current Faculty & Staff Members

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  
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  
Susan Sherzer  
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
Katie Young



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
Vice President: Patricia Sykes
Secretary: Adrea Lawrence
Treasurer: Naomi Baron


For more information please contact:

Mimi Fittig, fittig@american.edu, 202-885-2436