Vouloir, c’est pouvoir! Exploring Pi Delta Phi: The National French Honor Society

Vouloir, c’est pouvoir! Exploring Pi Delta Phi: The National French Honor Society

Melissa W.

Il est possible d'exceller dans une nouvelle langue! Avez-vous essayé? -- It is possible to excel in a new language! Have you tried?

Originally founded as a departmental honor society at the University of California, Berkeley in 1906, Pi Delta Phi is the oldest collegiate academic honor society for a modern foreign language in the United States. It continued as a local chapter, but members declared itself as the National French Honor Society in 1920. 

The purpose of Pi Delta Phi is:

  • To recognize outstanding scholarship to the French language literature
  • To increase the knowledge and appreciation of Americans for the cultural contributions of the French-speaking world
  • To stimulate and to encourage French cultural activities

Qualified applicants need not be a French language major, but must have excelled in an upper-level French class with a 3.0 standing along with an overall GPA of 3.0, and rank in the top 35% of his/her class. Graduate students must maintain a 3.5 GPA in order to qualify.

The organization saw a slow expansion early-on, but eventually saw a rise in popularity and membership after WWII. There are currently 380 chapters across the US with two in France. You can spot a Pi Delta Phi graduate by their red, white, and blue honor cords.

red white and blue honor cord from senior class graduation products

Are you a member of Pi Delta Phi? If so, toutes nos félicitations! 


Cover photo by Cecile Hournau on Unsplash

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