National Honor Societies
Beta Beta Beta, founded in 1922, recognizes excellence in biological sciences. Membership in the Epsilon Iota of Iowa Chapter (established in 1937) is limited to students of superior attainment in biology.
Delta Phi Alpha, founded in 1929, recognizes excellence in the study of German. Membership in the Zeta Tau Chapter (established in 1968) is by invitation to students, both majors and non-majors, who have demonstrated superior ability in advanced-level German courses and who meet the national requirements.
Lambda Alpha, National Collegiate Honors Society for Anthropology, recognizes superior achievement among students engaged in the study of anthropology. Membership in the Epsilon of Iowa chapter offers opportunities to publish in a national journal and to compete for scholarships.
Mortar Board, founded in 1918, is the national senior honor society. Membership in the Torch Chapter (established in 1943) is based on service, scholarship, and leadership. The election of a limited number of juniors most representative of these qualities is held in the second semester of each year.
Omicron Delta Epsilon, International Honor Society for Economics, was founded in 1963. It is one of the world's largest academic honor societies. The main objectives of Omicron Delta Epsilon are recognition of scholastic attainment and the honoring of outstanding achievements in economics and the establishment of closer ties between students and faculty in economics within colleges and universities. Members of the Iota of Iowa Chapter (chartered at Cornell in 2008) serve as tutors for students enrolled in ECB 101 (Macroeconomics), ECB 102 (Microeconomics), and ECB 151 (Financial Accounting).
Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, International was founded in 1902. It promotes "Service to the Student, the School, the Profession and the Community." It is the world's largest law fraternity and was the first to admit women. The Cornell College Pre-Law Chapter was established in 2005. Students interested in legal professions are eligible for election.
Phi Beta Kappa is the oldest of the national honorary scholastic societies in the United States, having been founded in 1776. The Delta of Iowa Chapter (chartered at Cornell in 1923) annually elects to membership a small number of juniors and seniors whose academic excellence is attested by a high grade point average and whose choice of courses, especially electives, demonstrates a broad exposure to the liberal arts–the fine arts, the humanities, languages, the natural sciences and mathematics, and the social sciences–as well as substantive work in areas outside the major.
Pi Delta Phi, is a national French honor society. Cornell College founded its first chapter of this organization, Nu Psi, in 2007. The purpose is to recognize outstanding scholarship in French and Francophone cultures and literatures, to increase the knowledge and appreciation of Americans for the cultural contributions of the French-speaking world, and to stimulate and encourage French and Francophone cultural activities.
Pi Kappa Lambda, founded in 1918, is dedicated to the furtherance of music education and the encouragement of eminent achievement in performance and composition. Election to the Alpha Gamma Chapter (established in 1948) recognizes excellence in scholarship and musicianship among students of music.
Pi Sigma Alpha, founded in 1920, has as its purpose "to stimulate productive scholarship and intelligent interest in the subject of government." Election to the Sigma Psi Chapter (established in 1992) recognizes scholarly attainment in the field of political science.
Psi Chi was founded in 1929 "for the purposes of encouraging, stimulating, and maintaining excellence in scholarship and advancing the science of psychology." Election to the Cornell Chapter (established in 1993) recognizes academic excellence in the field of psychology.
Sigma Delta Pi, founded in 1919, recognizes excellence in the study of Spanish. Election to the Tau Omicron Chapter (established in 1994) is open to both majors and non-majors who have demonstrated superior ability in advanced-level Spanish courses.
Sigma Gamma Epsilon, founded in 1915, was established to recognize scholarship and professionalism in the Earth Sciences. The Beta Pi Chapter at Cornell College is the oldest Chapter of the Society in Iowa. Membership is open to majors and non-majors who have maintained a minimum GPA in geology courses as well as additional course work.