Nine members of the Class of 2019 elected to Phi Beta Kappa

Nine members of the Class of 2019 have been elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa. An initiation ceremony was held on Friday, Sept. 21; though initiated this fall, these students were elected on the basis of their standing through their junior year at Sewanee.

The initiation was scheduled during Family Weekend so that the students’ families could attend the ceremony. The initiation in the University Archives was followed by a reception with the members of the chapter and with other faculty members invited by the students, before the attendees moved on to the Foundation Day Convocation later that afternoon.

Election to Phi Beta Kappa is perhaps the most prized honor a college student can receive. Students who have demonstrated exceptional academic excellence become eligible for election after completing at least six consecutive semesters. Phi Beta Kappa was founded in 1776 at the College of William and Mary; the Sewanee Chapter, Beta of Tennessee, was established in 1926.

Congratulations to Sewanee’s newest members:

  • Sarah Grace Board, chemistry major, Maumee, Ohio
  • Sean Rowan Halloran, biochemistry major, Jacksonville, Florida
  • Lillian Carol Hammen, English major and philosophy, Houston, Texas
  • Rachel Katherine Hudson, biochemistry major, Jasper, Tennessee
  • Thomas Shaifer Jones, biology and Spanish major, Decatur, Georgia
  • Ryan Charles Dean Mahan, biochemistry major, Paris, Tennessee
  • Daniel Callahan Oakley, biology major, Cutchogue, New York
  • Gretchen Paige Steele, French and international & global studies major, Birmingham, Alabama
  • Kendall Marie Wills, chemistry major, Spring Hill, Tennessee

Additional students in the Class of 2019 will be elected to Phi Beta Kappa and initiated during the second semester. Each year the Sewanee chapter elects a total of approximately 10 percent of the senior class to membership in Phi Beta Kappa. Two percent of the class generally is elected at the beginning of the first semester, on the basis of six semesters' work; additional members are elected at the beginning of the second semester and during Commencement Weekend.