Zeta Tau Alpha was founded on October 15, 1898, at Virginia State Female Normal School, now known as Longwood University.
In April of 1897, Virginia State Female Normal School, now known as Longwood University, witnessed the founding of Kappa Delta Sorority.
About eighteen months later, Virginia State Female Normal School would watch as another women’s fraternity, Zeta Tau Alpha, was founded.
History of Zeta Tau Alpha
Zeta Tau Alpha does not make much about its history public knowledge. However, what is known is that, on October 15, 1898, nine women came together to found an organization based on “the precepts of loyalty, responsibility, service, leadership, and committment.”
Zeta Tau Alpha joined the National Panhellenic Conference in 1909, the same year as Alpha Delta Pi and Alpha Gamma Delta. These sororities and women’s fraternities would become the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth organizations to join the conference. Today, the National Panhellenic Conference has twenty-six member organizations.
Zeta Tau Alpha Today
Today, Zeta Tau Alpha boasts over 200,000 initiated members and is the third largest organization in the Naitonal Panhellenic Conference. The organization has 147 active collegiate chapters, 250 alumnae organizations, and a fraternity housing association with a net worth of over $24 million and about 100 fraternity-owned properties.
Zeta Tau Alpha’s philanthropic focus is breast cancer education and awareness. According to the organization’s website, Zeta Tau Alpha promotes breast cancer education and awareness through its partnerships with various national campaigns and organizations, such as the National Football League, Yoplait Yogurt’s Save Lids to Save Lives, and the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.
In February 2004, Zeta Tau Alpha officially trademarked the “Think Pink” slogan as the umbrella slogan for its philanthropic efforts. By distributing shower cards explaining how to properly conduct a breast self examination or through contributing time to one of its partnerships, Zeta Tau Alpha has distributed over 20 million pieces of educational material and donated countless hours to their cause.
As a part of its educational materials, Zeta Tau Alpha members have distributed over six million “Think Pink” breast cancer awareness ribbons since 1997.
Zeta Tau Alpha is known throughout the world of Greek-letter organizations and societies by distinct insignia adopted throughout the organization’s history.
- Colors: turquoise blue and steel gray
- Symbol: five point crown
- Flower: white violet
- Philanthropies: breast cancer education and awareness, Think Pink, Yoplait Yogurt’s Save Lids to Save Lives, Susan G. Komen Foundation
- Motto: Seek the Noblest
Founded in 1898 at the Virginia State Female Normal School, Zeta Tau Alpha quickly followed in the footsteps of previous sororities and women’s fraternities in establishing an organization dedicated to the development of its members and various philanthropic causes.