|Roommates and initiates Sonthaya Lacy and Grace McGrew hold a replica of the Golden Key, a symbol of PBK.|
The Beta Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, established at UNH in 1952, held its first virtual initiation ceremony on May 12, 2021. More than 115 juniors and seniors accepted their invitation to join this, the oldest and most prestigious honor society in the liberal arts and sciences. In a webinar hosted by the officers of the chapter, students learned about the long history of the society and its evolution over 200 years. Both Provost Wayne Jones Jr. and UNH President James Dean also participated in the ceremony by offering their congratulations. Students took the oath of initiation and were treated an original poem written in their honor by Classics Professor Richard Clairmont, as is the tradition of the chapter. The next day many of the new members came in person to sign the official logbook, pick up honor cords and the PBK handbook. President Dante Scala is pleased to report that the acceptance rate for invited students was 80%, likely the highest in the chapter’s recent history. All the officers would like to thank the faculty and staff members of Beta Chapter, The Parents’ Association, COLA Dean Michele Dillon and the National Organization of Phi Beta Kappa, all of whom helped provide funds to help defray the costs of joining for many of the students.