A national honor society for first-generation college students has opened a chapter at Fresno Pacific University.
FPU’s Alpha Alpha Alpha (or Tri-Alpha) Honor Society inducted its first group of 63 students, eight faculty—including Provost Gayle Copeland, Ph.D.—and five staff members November 8, 2022, in a ceremony in the Warkentine Culture and Arts Center on the main university campus in Southeast Fresno. Sarah Micu, student success and equity coordinator, and Zoltan Torok, Ph.D., assistant professor of kinesiology, advise the chapter, known as Zeta Sigma.
An honor society honoring first-generation scholars is a natural for FPU, where 49% of students are the first in their families to attend college or university. These students graduate at the same rate as students in general.
Tri-Alpha was founded March 24, 2018, at Moravian College (now Moravian University) in Bethlehem, PA. Today there are more than 130 chapters in 35 states.
Induction requirements include:
- Students must have earned at least 30 credit/semester hours (or 45 quarter hours) towards a baccalaureate degree (including half-time) with an overall undergraduate GPA of at least 3.2 on a 4.0 scale.
- None of the student’s parents, stepparents or legal guardians have completed a bachelor’s degree.
- First generation graduate students may be admitted if they have completed the equivalent of at least one term of study (9 or more graduate credits) and have a GPA in their graduate program of at least 3.5.
Tri-Alpha joins chapters of the Alpha Chi, Phi Alpha Theta, Kappa Mu Epsilon, Pi Gamma Mu and Theta Alpha Kappa honor societies at FPU.