Alpha Sigma Nu

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Alpha Sigma Nu (ΑΣΝ) was founded at Marquette University in 1915 by John Danihy, S.J., Dean of Journalism. In his travels and reading, Father Danihy had encountered and admired honor societies. In the first half of the 20th century, administrators of Catholic institutions of higher education found that their students were being systematically locked out of other honor societies, especially Phi Beta Kappa. The society, known as Alpha Sigma Tau until 1930, spread from Marquette to Creighton University, to St. Louis University and to the University of Detroit in its first decade. By 1924, Gamma Pi Epsilon was founded to honor outstanding women. Alpha Sigma Nu and Gamma Pi Epsilon pursued separate but similar paths for almost 50 years, expanding nationally and cooperating on campuses where they existed together. The society born of their merger in 1973 is open to men and women at the 28 Jesuit institutions of higher education in the United States, two in Canada and one in South Korea. Alpha Sigma Nu, in seeking the best of Jesuit education, requires that its now 70,000 members emulate St. Ignatius through excellence in scholarship, loyalty, and service. Some 1,900 members are inducted each year.[citation needed]

Purpose[edit]

The purpose of the Society is:

  • to honor students of Jesuit institutions of higher education who distinguish themselves in scholarship, loyalty and service,
  • to honor persons who may or may not be alumni of Jesuit institutions of higher education who have distinguished themselves in scholarship, loyalty and service in their intellectual, civic, religious, professional or commercial pursuits,
  • to band together and to encourage those so honored to understand, appreciate and promote the ideals of Jesuit education,
  • to encourage the establishment and proper functioning of Chapters in accredited Jesuit institutions of higher education, and
  • to encourage the establishment and proper functioning of alumni clubs.[citation needed]

Mission[edit]

Alpha Sigma Nu recognizes those students who distinguish themselves in scholarship, loyalty and service. The only honor society permitted to bear the name Jesuit, Alpha Sigma Nu encourages its members to a lifetime pursuit of intellectual development, deepening Ignatian spirituality, service to others, and a commitment to the core principles of Jesuit education. Selection to Alpha Sigma Nu is the highest honor awarded on a Jesuit campus.[citation needed]

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