Pi Delta Phi - the National French Honor Society
Pi Delta Phi is the oldest academic honor society for a modern foreign language in the United States. It was founded in 1960 at the University of California, Berkeley, and nationalized the following year.
The BYU Gamma Psi chapter of Pi Delta Phi was chartered in 1963.
Today the society comprises more than 370 chapters at colleges and universities across the country and at the American Universities in Paris and Aix-en-Provence. Pi Delta Phi is officially endorsed by the American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) and is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies.
The purpose of the Society is to recognize outstanding scholarship in the French language and its literature, to increase the knowledge and appreciation of Americans for the cultural contributions of the French-speaking world, and to stimulate and to encourage French and francophone cultural activities.
Professors nominate academically qualified students "in recognition of their academic achievement in French."
The most visible privilege of membership is the set of bleu, blanc, et rouge honor cords that members are permitted to wear with their cap and gown at graduation. Pi Delta Phi members are also eligible for special scholarships offered by the society for in-country studies. Most importantly, membership in a nationally recognized and respected honor society is an impressive addition to a graduate school application and CV.
Additionally, members of the BYU chapter of Pi Delta Phi are frequently invited to exclusive events in the BYU French department, such as roundtable discussions with visiting scholars.