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Record Group 31 - Student Organizations and Publications

The first student organization at Virginia Tech was the Virginia Literary Society, formed in 1872, which was the forerunner of both the Lee and Maury Literary Societies. The Lee and Maury Literary Societies were responsible for the first student publication, the Gray Jacket, which was published sporatically between 1875 and 1906. Since those early days, there have been many student organizations and student publications, of various types, which have come and gone as well as some that have lasted. For a chronology of the earliest organizations, and for additional historical information, see Historical Data Book, 1872-1972.

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Honor Societies (RG 31/5)

Alpha Omicron Circle (of Omicron Delta Kappa)

The Alpha Omicron Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa was established at Virginia Tech in 1933. ODK is a national leadership honor society that "recognizes students who have excelled in campus life, including the areas of scholarship, athletics, campus government, religious offices, media organizations, and the performing arts and musical activities."

Records, 1933-91

0.8 cu. ft.
The collection contains five volumes of minutes, 1933-91. Volume one includes lists of charter members and "A Petition to Omicron Delta Kappa from the Petitioning Group of VPI." Also included are annual banquet programs (1961, 1968) and other programs, brochures, and memos (1956-72).

The Fraternity of Alpha Zeta

Virginia chapter formed in 1932 at Virginia Tech to promote the profession of agriculture among college students.

Records, 1947-92

0.8 cu. ft.
Collection consists of membership directories, meeting minutes, activity and project lists, and newsletters.

Mu of Virginia Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa

In 1972, an Ad Hoc Committee on a Phi Beta Kappa Chapter was appointed by Dean William C. Havard to "approach the problem of securing a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa for Virginia Tech." The result was the establishment of the Mu of Virginia Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa in 1977.

Records, 1972-77

1.4 cu. ft.
These records are from the files of Professor Albert Sturm, first president of the chapter, and primarily concern the formation of the chapter. Included in the collection are minutes of the Ad Hoc Committee on a Phi Beta Kappa Chapter (1972-74), Phi Beta Kappa Faculty Committee (1976-77), meetings of members of Phi Beta Kappa (1977), and the Mu of Virginia Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa (1977-78). The minutes of the Mu of Virginia Chapter include annual meetings and Executive Committee meetings. Also included in the collection are correspondence, membership lists, material concerning the installation ceremony in 1977, General Report to Committee on Qualifications, United Chapters, Phi Beta Kappa (1 October 1974), and a speech by Dr. William C. Havard (1977).

Phi Delta Kappa

The local chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, an honorary education fraternity, was formed in 1972.

Records, 1971-91

3.6 cu. ft. This collection includes: constitution and bylaws; correspondence; conference material; Executive Committee agendas, minutes, and memoranda; financial records; lists of chapter locations and contact persons in Virginia; lists of committees and members; material concerning research projects and awards; Membership Committee reports; nomination and membership applications forms; Petition for a Campus Charter (26 April 1972); President's Letter to Leaders and other newsletters; and Chapter Officer Handbooks (1972-74, 1976-77). The collection contains correspondence and other items related to the formation of the VPI chapter, including material of the Ad Hoc Committee to Establish a Campus Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa and items concerning initiation and installation. There are also correspondence, memoranda, and other items concerning admission of women into the fraternity. Copies of numbers 79 and 185-192 of Fastbacks, a series of publications by the national organization on topics in education, also are included in the collection (cataloged copies available in Library under various call numbers; see VTLS).

Pi Delta Epsilon

Pi Delta Epsilon, an honorary journalism society, was established in 1930, as an outgrowth of Tau Beta Epsilon which had been organized in 1927. In 1975, Pi Delta Epsilon was merged with Alpha Phi Gamma, another honorary journalism society, to form the Society of Collegiate Journalists.

Records, 1964-75

0.4 cu. ft. This collection includes the Charter, Charter Rolls of Honor, correspondence, membership lists, minutes, and pledge essays.

Phi Kappa Phi

The national Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi was founded in 1897 at the University of Maine at Orono. The Virginia Tech chapter started in 1921. The purpose of the society is to recognize and encourage "superior scholarship in all academic disciplines."

Records, 1921-89

1.0 cu. ft.
The collection includes correspondence (1921-89), Constitution and Bylaws (with amendments and changes), initiation records (1944-73), financial records (1922-89), banquet programs, Honors Day programs, a manual of instruction for officers, photographs, materials related to activities of the national organization, lists of officers, annual reports (1933-37, 1943-44, 1946-70), committee reports, duties of Chapter secretary, ritual for initiation of new members, news releases, awards, information on members elected from alumni and faculty, information on Emeriti Life members, Dr. Louis Pardue's speech at the 1956 annual meeting, newspaper clippings, an index to the Phi Kappa Phi Journal, and the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi Handbook (1955 and 1989 editions).

Special Events (RG 31/13)

Virginia Tech Ring and Class Collections (RG 31/13/3)

Records, 1910-2014

5.83 cu. ft.; 11 boxes
The Virginia Tech Ring and Class Collections document the work of the Ring Design Committee, Ring Dance Committee, and individual classes at VPI, including their reunions. Items include ring design proposals and collection brochures, invitations and flyers for ring dances, and memorabilia for graduating classes and class reunions.

Finding aid available online.

Special Interest Clubs (Extracurricular) (RG 31/14)

Appalachian Student Organizing Committee

Records, 1972-74

10 cu. ft. (Ms89-110)
This collection is primarily the papers of David Tice and Allan Cox, student organizers of ASOC, including: correspondence; newspaper clippings, small-press and local publications on Appalachian issues, petitions; and notes and drafts. Records deal with various topics including: strip mining and land use issues; poverty; health care and free clinics, coal mining and coal miners; strikes; local political races; and the Vietnam War. This collection in located under a manuscript number instead of a record group because of the nature and scope of the material.

Lee Literary Society

The Virginia Literary Society was formed in 1872 as the first student organization at the College. This Society split into the Sophsonian and Philomathian Societies in 1873. In February of that year, the Sophsonian Society changed its name to the Lee Literary Society and the Philomathian became the Maury Literary Society in May. Together these two organizations established the Gray Jacket, the first student publication, in 1875. In 1928, the two societies merged, but then folded one year later.

Records, 1873-1926

1.0 cu. ft.
This collection includes three volumes of handwritten minutes (1881-92, 1892-1903, 1921-26), commencement exercise programs of the Lee Literary Society (1880, 1885, 1886, 1893), other programs and announcements, membership application forms, constitutions and bylaws (1907, 1922), and handwritten notes. Also included is a commencement exercise program of the Sophsonian Society, 1873.

Maury Literary Society

The Virginia Literary Society was formed in 1872 as the first student organization at the College. This Society split into the Sophsonian and Philomathian Societies in 1873. In May of that year, the Philomathian Society changed its name to the Maury Literary Society, in honor of Commodore Matthew Fontain Maury of Virginia. The Sophsonian had already become the Lee Literary Society in February. The Maury and Lee Literary Societies joined forces to produce the first student publication, the Gray Jacket, in 1875. In 1928, the two societies merged, but then folded one year later.

Records, 1873-1928

2.0 cu. ft.
This collection includes five volumes of handwritten minutes (1876-87, 1890-96, 1896-1903, 1915-18, 1924-28), a financial ledger (1891-93), a membership roll book (1917-28), constitution and bylaws (1921), programs, announcements, and correspondence. The 1890-96 minute book contains membership rolls for 1890-96 and the 1915-18 minute book contains membership rolls for 1893-94 and 1915-18. Also included in the collection are medals and pins awarded by the Society. Photographs of medals, orders of knighthood, and diamond pins given to Matthew Maury (for whom the Society was named) by the Crowned Heads of Europe and an accompanying card presenting these photos to the Society in June 1900 is also included.

Virginia Public Interest Research Group

The Public Interest Research Group is a national consumer organization that resulted from the consumer advocacy program of Ralph Nader. In 1975-76, efforts were made to form a local campus group, VaPIRG. However, the group existed only as a subcommittee of the Student Government Association. New efforts were initiated in 1980.

Records, 1972-76, 1980

1.0 cu. ft.
This collection contains material pertaining to the local campus group, other Virginia groups, and the national organization. Included in the collection are membership lists, faculty endorsements, drafts of bylaws, signed petitions of support, notes and other material on research topics, publicity items, assorted printed material, and newspaper clippings. For other Virginia PIRGs, the collection includes materials on general organizing information, photocopies of endorsements by various prominent individuals, and information on research projects. There are also publications by the Citizen Action Group of Washington, D.C., and various PIRGs of other states. Some clippings are included dealing with the 1980 effort to start a local group.

Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association (RG 31/14/9)

The Virginia Tech Amateur Radio Association began in 1913, but has been officially associated with the college since 1922.

Records, 1913-2000

0.8 cu. ft.
Collection consists of papers, including certificates, various logs, membership lists, correspondences, publications, violations, registration forms, yearly recollections, and copies of radio licenses, as well as photographs, negatives, and various items pulled from the scrapbook.

Finding aid available online. RG 31/14/9.

Student Government Association (RG 31/16)

A Unified Student Body was established on 19 April 1966, under a constitution that combined the Civilian Student Body and the Corps of Cadets. The following year, the name was changed to the Student Government Association.

Records, 1947-78

1.0 cu. ft.
The collection includes: Civilian Student Body minutes (1947-66); Student Government Association minutes (1967-78); Constitution of the Civilian Student Body (1957, 1962); Constitution of the Student Body (1966); Constitution of the Student Government Association (1969); Off-Campus Student Association Constitution (1969); Rules (1969); SGA President State of the Senate Address (1968); Senate Newsletter (1969); Student Cooperative Board of Directors Minutes (1971); and items dealing with the Honor Court and Honor System. Also included are the following SGA committees' reports from 1969: Firearms Committee; SGA Commission on Student Affairs; SGA Presidential Commission on Student Food Services; Student Government Report on the University Bookstore; Student Life Committee Report on Student Salaries and Summer Government; and Reappropriationment Committee.

Additional material concerning the Honor System can be found in SubGroup 31/1/1, including the final report and other items of the Committee to Study the Honor System (1973), the Honor System Associate Justice Manual, the Constitution of the VPI & SU Honor System, brochures and other printed items dealing with the rules of the Honor System, memoranda, and newspaper clippings (1960-present).

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