Phi Delta Kappa (PDK), an international association for education professionals, was chartered at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, on March 16, 1911. PDK sought to promote the scientific study of education and promote the welfare of men in education. The same ideals are practiced by PDK today: research, leadership, and service in education. Membership is limited to “professional educators of good character." Women were first allowed to become members in 1974.
The Alpha Theta Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa began at the University of North Dakota in 1922, with the formation of a society of professional educators known as Padeia. Padeia was formed with the distinct purpose of becoming a chapter of PDK as soon as possible. Padeia was in existence from 1922 until May 15, 1924, at which time the installation of the Alpha Theta Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa took place. The chapter name was changed to the University of North Dakota Chapter during the 1960s. Membership was taken from faculty members of the University, as well as graduate and undergraduate students in the field of education.
The UND Chapter celebrated its 75th Anniversary in March 1999. The Chapter has promoted the cause of education by sponsoring several undergraduate scholarships, conducting lectures, meetings and conferences, and touring educational facilities across the state and region.
The Phi Delta Kappa, Alpha Theta Chapter Records were deposited in the Orin G. Libby Manuscript Collection by Kathie Anderson, Grand Forks, North Dakota, on July 8 and July 14, 1988 (88-1604; 88-1606).
The Phi Delta Kappa, Alpha Theta Chapter Records, 1922-1988 (bulk are 1922-1960 and 1980-1988), were received unorganized and, upon processing, were rearranged to reflect the organizational structure of the fraternity. Papers submitted by PDK members were arranged topically. It should be noted that the records do not contain meeting minutes of the organization. The scrapbook, however, documents the early years of the fraternity.
The records include a history; bylaws; a summary of PDK at different levels (1986); a PDK handbook from UND (1980-1981); lists of officers and award winners (1983-1984); various newsletters; meeting notices and schedules; correspondence (1932 & 1981-1988); papers written or submitted by PDK members, either biographical, religious, or school related; and miscellaneous papers.
Also included are several photographs and a scrapbook (1922-1960). The scrapbook contains photographs of past presidents, membership listings, a written history, yearly histories and highlights, and photographs of many PDK members and groups. The scrapbook was separated and placed on the shelves adjacent to the collection, while the photographs were separated and placed in Photograph File Cabinets.