Pennsylvania Eta image

Pennsylvania Eta

Layfayette College

Founding date: 10/4/1980

Installing Officer:
Grand President Jean Wirths Scott, Pennsylvania Beta

Philanthropy Event:
Dance Marathon

Installation at Pennsylvania Eta

A local group, Delta Psi, was formed in 1978. The group officially became a chapter of Pi Beta Phi on October 4, 1980. In October, 59 collegiate members and one alumna initiate, Bonnie Butler, were initiated into Pi Beta Phi and became charter members of Pennsylvania Eta.

The weekend began Friday evening with the formal pledging of Bonnie Butler, an original member of Delta Psi. Following the pre-initiation ceremony, active members from Dickinson and Bucknell treated those gathered to a Cookie Shine. Congratulatory messages were read by Resident Graduate Counselor Lynn Moore and many gifts were presented. Every Pi Phi song anyone could remember was sung and taught to the new chapter. Many chapters were represented and ages ranged from recent graduate to Golden Arrow.

The Philadelphia-Main Line Alumnae Club planned the Friday evening activities. Jean Wirths Scott, Grand President, began the Initiation Ceremony early on Saturday morning at the College Hill Presbyterian Church. Again the Philadelphia-Main Line Club, under Jill Shiner Hayward's direction, was in charge. Saturday evening, at a banquet, the chapter was officially installed by Mrs. Scott.

Jean Dunbar Socolowski, a member of the Emma Harper Turner Fund committee, was toastmistress. She introduced Alice Weber Johnson, Past Grand President, who read the roll call of chapters. There were 58 chapters were represented. Grand Council and sponsoring chapters and clubs of Gamma Province presented more gifts. Following the Candle Lighting Ceremony performed by the Northern New Jersey Club, Jean Wirths Scott and Karen Johannes, outgoing president of the colony, led the traditional Loving Cup Ceremony (which is no longer recognized by Pi Beta Phi) as guests formed Friendship Circles. A model chapter meeting was conducted by Adrienne Hiscox Mitchell, Grand Vice President of Collegians, on Sunday morning in Marquis Hall, followed by a tour of the chapter house at 225 Reeder Street. Originally the Theta Chi house, the college-owned property houses several members of the new chapter and is their meeting place. Jane Turner Campbell, Chapter House Corporation, and her committee have done an excellent job redecorating and making the house a very special home.

On Sunday afternoon, parents and members of the campus and community joined to offer their congratulations at a reception.

Living at Pennsylvania Eta

The chapter’s house has three floors and 18 bedrooms for a total of 30 women living in the house. One of the most interesting items in this chapter house is the silver plate they received when they received their charter in 1980. The plate is stored in their trophy case along with other awards from convention and alumnae. 

Panhellenic Groups on Campus

Alpha Gamma Delta, Alpha Phi, Delta Delta Delta, Delta Gamma, Kappa Kappa Gamma and Pi Beta Phi 

Philanthropic Service

The chapter’s main philanthropy event is Dance Marathon, which is hosted in the fall semester. It is a dance competition and talent show where each Greek Life organization, and some non-Greek organizations, perform dances or talent displays for an audience. 

Notable Alumnae

  • Wynne Whitman, legal and financial author 
  • Tram-Ahn Tran, actress

Carolyn Helman Lichtenberg Crest Award Winners from Pennsylvania Eta

  • Wynne Whitman (2010)