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Gamma Rho

Pennsylvania State University

Apr 12th, 1958

Founding Date

In April, 1956, a local sorority called Trion was formed as the 22nd women’s fraternity on the Pennsylvania State University campus at State College. On April 12, 1958, this persevering group became Gamma Rho chapter of Alpha Phi.


Installation weekend for the sixty-first Alpha Phi chapter began on Friday evening with dinner and inspirational talks by Elinor Smith Davis (Gamma-DePauw), director of extension, and Frances Cottrell Hoefer (Alpha-Syracuse), director of programs. On Saturday afternoon sixteen members from Cornell (Delta) came to initiate the thirty-nine new Alpha Phis, and that evening the charter was presented to collegiate president, Donna Jean Cramer, by Elinor Davis. The installation banquet was arranged by Mary Fisher Slaughter (Beta Alpha-Illinois) and the Pittsburgh alumnae, and Irene Rose Moore (Beta Alpha-Illinois), international scholarship chairman, acted as toastmistress.


The university-sponsored Greek Sunday brought alumnae and collegiates to the chapel service in a body the next morning, and in the early afternoon the whole Bucknell (Beta Chi) chapter came to present a model meeting. A reception given by the Central Pennsylvania alumnae at three o’clock was attended by the faculty and administration, alumnae and townspeople and parents who came to express their happiness in their daughters’ joy in becoming Alpha Phis.


Participating in the weekend’s festivities were representatives from 19 different Alpha Phi chapters. Collegiates in addition to those from Cornell (Delta) and Bucknell (Beta Chi) came from Syracuse (Alpha), Boston (Eta) and West Virginia (Beta Iota); other fraternity officers included Annie Laurie Walls McElroy (Beta Beta-Michigan State), district governor; Eloise Chandler O’Connor (Phi-Oklahoma), district alumnae chairman, and Marjorie Slough Hill (Beta Epsilon-Arizona), former state chairman. 


Exemplifying the faith of the university administration in the success of the new chapter was Dean of Women Pearl O. Weston who accepted Alpha Phi’s invitation to membership and was initiated as an alumna of Gamma Rho. Also initiated was university hostess Marion H. Barrett.