Alpha Sigma Nu FAQ

Why was Alpha Sigma Nu founded? What makes it different from other honor societies?

Jesuit colleges and universities were not yet coeducational when Alpha Sigma Nu was founded in 1915. The society, known as Alpha Sigma Tau until 1930, spread from Marquette to Creighton University, to St. Louis University and to the University of Detroit in its first decade. By 1924 Marquette University had become coeducational and Gamma Pi epsilon was founded to honor outstanding women. Alpha Sigma Nu and Gamma Pi Epsilon pursued separate but similar paths for almost 50 years, expanding nationally and cooperating on campuses where they existed together. The society born of their merger in 1973 is open to men and women at the 28 Jesuit colleges and universities in the United States, two graduate schools of theology, and Sogang University in Seoul, Korea.

Alpha Sigma Nu is unique among honor societies in that it seeks to identify the most promising students of the Jesuit schools who demonstrate an intelligent appreciation of and commitment to the ideals of Jesuit higher education - intellectual, social, moral, and religious. Selection to Alpha Sigma Nu is one of the highest honors that can be given on a Jesuit campus.

Who is eligible to join Alpha Sigma Nu?

Juniors, seniors, and students in graduate and professional schools who rank in the top 15 percent of their classes may be considered for membership. Each chapter can nominate no more than four percent of the junior and senior classes from each school or college of a university. The method of selection varies from campus to campus, but is based always on scholarship, loyalty and service. Chapters may also initiate honorary members, persons who are not students in the school but who display the outstanding qualities sought in Alpha Sigma Nu members.

What are the ASN chapter's activities?

Activities vary from chapter to chapter. Some ASN chapters have long-standing traditions of activity in such areas as orientation programs, tutoring services, honors convocations, leadership conferences, seminars, lecture series, outstanding teacher awards, reports to the university administration and community service.

Other chapters limit activity to the annual selection and initiation of new members, recognizing those who prove themselves outstanding in their other campus activities.

What is expected of ASN members?

Acceptance into Alpha Sigma Nu is recognition that the student has achieved a high level of academic accomplishment and also shown leadership by embodying, in word and deed, the values of service to others and loyalty to the ideals and goals of Jesuit education. ASN members promise to continue to do so throughout their lives.

ASN alumni participate in community and national activities as individuals and through alumni chapters.

What is the cost for ASN membership?

There is a $90 initiation fee payable by the inductee. The initiation fee covers the cost of the Alpha Sigma Nu lapel pin, certificate and graduation medallion. There are no national dues, but Alpha Sigma Nu members are generous in their support of the society through the Annual Sustaining Fund, which supports scholarships, National Book Awards, and the administration of the society.