Mortar Board National Office
1200 Chambers Road #210
Columbus, OH 43212
fax: 614-488-4095

Section Coordinator
Abby Diehl

Mortar Board is a call for caring.

Mortar Board's History

Mortar Board was the first national organization honoring senior college women.  The evolution of Mortar Board mirrors an attempt to keep pace with an ever-changing society. 

It was on the campus of the University of Chicago in the fall of 1915 when a member of Mortar Board from The Ohio State University met a member of Pi Sigma Chi from Swarthmore College.  Both women wore similar pins in the shape of a mortarboard.  Through discussion they realized each represented an honor society for women with similar election methods, operating procedures, ideals, and traditions.  The main difference in the honor societies was their names. 

The founding meeting for the organization of the national honor society took place at Syracuse University on February 15, 1918.  Representatives were from Cornell University, The University of Michigan, The Ohio State University, Swarthmore College as well as Syracuse University, which did not choose to join the national organization when it became Mortar Board following the founding meeting. 

The founding meeting adopted the pin of The Ohio State University, a small black mortarboard.  A motto was adopted, taken from the Greek words meaning service, scholarship, and leadership, to be represented by three Greek letters, Pi Sigma Alpha, the letters which appear on the pin.  The constitution was adopted from a tentative plan outlined by Swarthmore.  Officially the society remained nameless until the second convention at The University of Michigan, but correspondence with prospective chapters following the February 1918 meeting referred to the new organization as Mortar Board, the name and spelling of the Ohio State honor society.

Click here
for more history

Membership is a creative demand.

You were not tapped as an immobile museum piece for we are not interested in erecting marble monuments to scholarship, leadership, and service.
Ours is a more dynamic principle-the hope that you will continue and even surpass what you have successfully begun here at college.

To accept Mortar Board membership is to accept responsibility-
Not to an impersonal institution, but rather to yourself and to the individuals around you.