Dear members and friends,
Today, the Phi Beta Kappa Society stands firmly for the idea that inspired our founding in 1776: education in the liberal arts and sciences is essential for our democracy. As President and as Secretary/CEO, we are honored to share with you a new strategic plan, Mapping the Future of The Phi Beta Kappa Society. We invite you to join us in charting the course for the Society’s future.
At a time when Phi Beta Kappa’s mission is more relevant than ever, Mapping the Future is a forward-looking guide to the Society’s vitally important work championing education in the liberal arts and sciences, fostering freedom of thought, and recognizing academic excellence. The plan serves as both our strategic framework for the next three years and our roadmap in anticipation of a major milestone: the Society’s 250th anniversary in 2026.
Mapping the Future emphasizes our determination to serve as a clear, powerful and persuasive voice for the liberal arts and sciences, in a time of short-sighted rhetoric from policymakers and others who disparage the basic values of higher learning and free inquiry. The plan commits us to strengthening our campus-based chapters at nearly 300 colleges and universities across the country. The plan also envisions new ways to cultivate lifelong membership experiences through our alumni associations and national office programs that connect our members and foster engagement with the communities in which we live.
We are committed to broadening the reach of Phi Beta Kappa locally, nationally, and even internationally in the years ahead. From our first five members who met in the Raleigh Tavern in Williamsburg, Virginia on December 5, 1776 to organize the Society, we have grown to become a network of well over 500,000 people, from a wide diversity of backgrounds and hailing from across the globe. All of our members have demonstrated excellence in the liberal arts and sciences. As we welcome this widening circle of Phi Beta Kappa members, we are paying close attention to the essential role of new voices, perspectives and talents; our diversity will fuel the excellence that is our hallmark across generations.
Join us in the activities and programs of the Phi Beta Kappa Society. We hope you will work with us in giving shape to the compelling next chapter of this iconic organization. As we approach our 250th anniversary, together let us ensure that our most important and meaningful work lies yet ahead.
Frederick M. Lawrence