Beta Pi

University of Washington


Historical facts: ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

  1. Helen H. Wadsworth Graves, Boston, the wife of the president of the pioneer university of the northwest — the University of Washington — gathered a small group of girls from the student body and began to instill in them the ideals of a national fraternity — Kappa Kappa Gamma. The girls whom Mrs. Graves selected as seeming to be best suited for Kappa formed local sorority Alpha Kappa Gamma. At last, on Feb. 4, 1905, they were invited to the Kappa sisterhood.

  2. At the 1930 General Convention, funding for a full-time Traveling Secretary was approved. Helen Snyder, a Beta Pi who had been a Graduate Counselor in 1929, received the first appointment.

  3. Fundraising by a Beta Pi alumna committee raised enough money to endow the Golden Jubilee Scholarship in the university’s financial aid office. This endowment continues today.

Fun facts:

  1. The Kappas were the recipients of their share of fraternity pranks. A long-standing tradition began in 1916 by the Fijis who climbed onto the roof of the chapter house where they painted “ICE.” After that, Beta Pi was known as the “ice house.”

  2. Pledges living in the house in the 1950s were expected to attend study table in the dining room Sunday through Thursday from 7–9 p.m. and be in bed by 11 p.m. If a new member didn’t want to go to study table, she had to be in bed.

  3. The chapter members were assigned phone duty during specific times in the afternoon and evening. During their assigned times, the member on duty was responsible for taking messages and notifying the women in the house if they received a phone call. The intercom was used at that time to let the women know if they had a phone call or a visitor on the main floor.

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