International Sorority of Beta Sigma Phi to celebrate 88 years

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

On April 29 in Concordia, two chapters of Beta Sigma Phi, together with 12,500 chapters of 250,000 members throughout the world, will celebrate their Founderís Day. Founderís Day honors Walter W. Ross, a man who, during the Depression, saw a need among the young women he met in his work as a traveling encyclopedia salesman. He believed they needed more in their lives than work, responsibility and hardship, and decided to devote his life to providing them with a social and cultural outlet.

His efforts brought seven young women in Abilene, Kan., together in 1931 to form that sort of organization. Beta Sigma Phi met their needs, and continues to meet the needs of hundreds of thousands of women today. This year on April 30, Walter Ross will be remembered by this: the largest Greek letter sorority in the world.

Throughout the 88 years of its history, the members of Beta Sigma Phi have enjoyed programs for cultural studies and numerous social events. They devote much of their time and effort to service, and recently raised over $300,000 for sorority sisters who suffered losses due to natural disasters. Beta Sigma Phis are also funding a breast cancer research project that has raised almost $200,000.

A typical year finds the chapters donating more than $3 million directly to local charities, reflecting over 200,000 work hours. The chapters have created their own international funds, which donate millions to health research groups, hunger projects, and other worthwhile causes. Through Beta Sigma Phiís International loan and scholarship funds, members and their families receive assistance.

Basic to Beta Sigma Phi, however, are the socials for its members. One of the most important is Founderís Day. Xi Theta Zeta and Beta Psi Master, the two local chapters in Concordia, will meet at 5 p.m. Monday, April 29, at Dempseyís restaurant to observe Founderís Day. Xi Theta Zeta will be in charge of the event that evening.

Awards will be presented during the evening to the individual outstanding chapter members, recognizing them for their sorority work. Some local Beta Sigma Phi projects include Xi Theta Zeta sponsoring the Easter Egg Hunt and the Holiday Craft Fair, and Beta Psi Master sponsoring the Mehetabel Hulver Memorial Scholarship and donating school supplies to the elementary school and money to the Concordia Senior Center. Following the awards presentation, installation of officers for the coming year will be held.

Beta Psi Master will meet Monday, May 6, at the home of Martha Pollard. Installation of officers will be held.

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