Celebrating 91 years this week, the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) was founded on May 10th, 1930 at Howard University in Washington, D.C. The NPHC promotes the well-being of its affiliate fraternities and sororities and provides leadership training for its members. The chartering organizations were Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, Zeta Phi Beta, Kappa Alpha Psi, and Omega Psi Phi.
A year later in 1931, Alpha Phi Alpha and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity joined the council, followed by Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. in 1937. Iota Phi Theta, the ninth affiliate member, joined in 1997. Together, the nine Greek letter organizations are called the “Divine Nine (D9).”
NPHC was created during a time where Greek letter organizations founded by African Americans were prohibited from being affiliated with Greek letter organizations founded by whites. With racial isolation on predominantly white campuses, NPHC was formed to bring unity during an era where African Americans were denied essential rights and privileges; there was a growing need for African Americans to form connections with those sharing similar ideals and goals.
Today, the main purpose and focus of NPHC member organizations continues to be creating community awareness through educational, economic, and cultural service activities. It’s also about fostering brotherhood and sisterhood in order to bring about social change that will continue to generate positive changes for African Americans.
Visit https://nphchq.com/ to learn more about the mission of NPHC and how it continues to be deeply valuable for the African American community nearly a century later.
Below, watch an NBC News segment on the legacy of the Divine Nine: