Those of us who worked for so many years to bring Phi Beta Kappa to Clemson are pleased that our chapter, now in its fifth year, is firmly established. While many might feel that having a chapter of the most prestigious national honor society was long overdue, which it was, certainly it realizes the intentions of Thomas Green Clemson, our founder, himself in establishing Clemson. For if Clemson had in mind, as he explained in his will, a practical institution to educate farmers and what we now call engineers, he also called for “a high seminary of learning,” that is an institution that reflected the broad, cosmopolitan education he had himself received in Europe, the kind of education which he, a mining engineer, embodied with his fluency in numerous languages, his high regard for literature and knowledge of the past, and his interest in art and music. Such interests were, and remain, those that Phi Beta Kappa recognizes. Founded in Williamsburg in 1776, Phi Beta Kappa nonetheless remains very much an education ideal relevant to the present. It recognizes the kind of education Clemson himself admired and founded the university to achieve. Those interested in possibly being tapped for membership are urged, because of Phi Beta Kappa’s special requirements, to plan their course of study at Clemson with those requirements in mind.
Dr. Alan Grubb
Associate Professor of History
President, Clemson Phi Beta Kappa