Social Work

Phi Alpha Honor Society

The Phi Alpha Honor Society provides a closer bond among students of social work and promotes humanitarian goals and ideals. Phi Alpha fosters high standards of education for social workers and invites into membership those who have excellence in scholarship and achievement in social work. Phi Alpha’s slogan that embraces their purpose is “Through Knowledge-the Challenge to Serve.”

The concept of a national social work honor society came from a group of undergraduate social work students at Michigan Sate University in 1960. Investigation revealed that local chapters existed at three schools. Those three schools along with a few other schools formed a National Honor society Committee in November 1960. For more than a year this committee worked on the constitution and other administrative matters. The name Phi Alpha and the key were adopted from the local chapter which existed at Florida State University. The constitution and formal organization were completed in 1962, and six chapters quailed to become” charter chapters.” They were Florida State, Michigan State University, Ohio Northern University, Central State College, University of Dayton and the University of Tennessee. Over 110 chapters are now in existence, and the addition of new chapters is continuing. The Mary Baldwin College Sigma Phi Chapter was added in April 2011.

Phi Alpha holds an annual induction ceremony in Miller Chapel each spring. Please contact Dr. Gauri Rai, faculty advisor, at for more information or to apply to become a member.

2014 Phi Alpha Members:
Germaine Awlime
Kirsten Bratton
Monique Burgess
Haneen Khailafeh
Kiera Kimp
Ashley Shoell (Club President)
Amanda Slade
Hattice Taylor
MaryEtta Rice-Way
Sommer Bognar
Tammy Epperly

2012 Phi Alpha Members
Tierra Smith (founder of MBC Phi Alpha chapter)
Joshau Thompson
Rebekka Conz

Membership Requirements:
An undergraduate student is eligible for active membership after achieving the following National minimum requirements and meeting local Chapter requirements:
a. Declared social work as a major.
b. Achieved sophomore status.
c. Completed 8 semester hours or 12 quarter hours of required social work courses.
d. Achieved an overall grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
e. Achieved a 3.25 grade point average in required social work courses.
f. Local chapter may establish higher eligibility requirements.