Jump to navigation Jump to search Not to be confused with National Panhellenic Conference. African American, international Iota phi theta hazing lettered fraternities and sororities.
The council promotes interaction through forums, meetings and other mediums for the exchange of information and engages in cooperative programming and initiatives through various activities and functions. Each constituent member organization determines its own strategic direction and program agenda. Today, the primary purpose and focus of member organizations remains camaraderie and academic excellence for its members and service to the communities they serve. Each promotes community awareness and action through educational, economic, and cultural service activities.
The National Pan-Hellenic Council was established in an age when racial segregation and disenfranchisement plagued African Americans, the rise of each of the black fraternities and sororities that make up the NPHC bore witness to the fact that despite hardships African Americans refused to accede to a status of inferiority. Unanimity of thought and action as far as possible in the conduct of Greek letter collegiate fraternities and sororities, and to consider problems of mutual interest to its member organizations. The founding members of the NPHC were Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, and Zeta Phi Beta. As required by various campus recognition policies, neither the NPHC, nor its member national or chapter organizations discriminate on the basis of race or religion. In 1992, the first permanent national office for NPHC was established in Bloomington, Indiana on the campus of Indiana University through the joint cooperation of Indiana University and the National Board of Directors of NPHC. Celebrating Community: A Tribute to Black Fraternal, Social and Civic Institutions”.
Archived from the original on 2008-04-16. Archived from the original on 2009-12-22. The Divine Nine: The History of African-American Fraternities and Sororities in America. African American Fraternities and Sororities: The Legacy and the Vision.
Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky. Black Greek-Letter Organizations in the 21st Century: Our Fight Has Just Begun. Skocpol, Theda, Ariane Liazos, and Marshall Ganz. What a Mighty Power We Can Be: African American Fraternal Groups and the Struggle for Racial Equality . This article relies too much on references to primary sources. This article needs additional citations for verification.
The fraternity was founded by 12 men — Albert Hicks, Lonnie Spruill Jr. Charles Briscoe, Frank Coakley, John Slade, Barron Willis, Webster Lewis, Charles Brown, Louis Hudnell, Charles Gregory, Elias Dorsey Jr. Michael Williams — during the Civil Rights Movement. Unlike most of their fraternity peers, the founders were all non-traditional students. Many of them were three to five years older, worked and attended classes full time, had served in the military, and had families with small children.
These experiences gave the founders a different perspective than the typical fraternity member. Brothers participated in various protests and sit-ins throughout Baltimore to fight racial segregation. The earliest was a protest organized with a civic interest group, composed mostly of Morgan State College students, against the theater at Northwood Shopping Center in Baltimore, Maryland, located diagonally across the street from Morgan State College. This protest started February 15, 1963, and over the course of the six days, the total number of picketers involved reached 1500, and over 400 individuals were arrested. The protest took place in the context of a longer history of protests against the theater’s white-only policy. Annual demonstrations against the theater had been held since 1955, including a sit-in at Northwood and picketing downtown.
Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, the fraternity supported the Big Brothers of America. In 1974, the then Grand Polaris, Thomas Dean, appeared in a local television commercial on behalf of Big Brothers of America. The first steps toward moving the fraternity from a regional to a national scope were taken with the creation of Upsilon Chapter at Southern Illinois University in 1974. While its NIC membership was and is beneficial, Iota continued contact with the NPHC, which at the time had no expansion policy with which to accept new members. At its 1993 national convention, the NPHC adopted a constitutional amendment which provided for expansion, and several years later, a NPHC expansion committee developed criteria for potential new member organizations and a procedure by which they might apply. In 1996, Iota Phi Theta submitted a formal application to the NPHC expansion committee for review, after which it was delivered to the NPHC Executive Board.
After deliberation, the board unanimously approved Iota Phi Theta’s membership application. Effective November 12, 1996, Iota Phi Theta was accepted as a full member of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, with all its rights, privileges, and responsibilities. In 1992, the fraternity established the National Iota Foundation, Inc. September 19, 2013 marked the fraternity’s 50th anniversary. Since its founding date, Iota Phi Theta has continued to grow and has become the fifth-largest and fastest growing predominantly black fraternal organization in the United States. Iota Phi Theta is led by a Grand Council with a Grand Polaris at its head. Iota Phi Theta has a publication and several affiliated programs.