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Beta Epsilon

University of Arizona

Mar 12th, 1926

Founding Date

The potential Beta Epsilon Chapter of Alpha Phi was organized as Delta Delta sorority in April, 1922, at the University of Arizona. In May, 1922, the authorities at the University recognized the group and the women took a small house. Very soon after, they decided to make Alpha Phi their goal and spent the next few years proving their abilities. They held the scholarship cup for several semesters and went out for athletics and dramatics. A very active support in helping the women shape their policies and activities was Ina Gittings (Nu-Nebraska), head of the physical education department at the University of Arizona. 


Then, in the spring of 1925, a formal petition was sent to Alpha Phi, and a telegram announcing its acceptance was sent as a Christmas present the following December. After vacation, preparations for installation began in earnest. Delta Delta had expanded beyond its first house and moved into a larger one, and it was here that the installation committee consisting of Marion Wiley Keys (Alpha-Syracuse), Ann Kelly (Omega-Texas), Charlee Kelly (Omega-Texas), Marjorie MacElhinney (Upsilon-Washburn), and Betty Field (Beta-Northwestern) initiated the new chapter. Charlee Kelly, a writer for the Quarterly in 1926 wrote about the installation of the Beta Epsilon chapter at The University of Arizona,  


“It is impossible to describe the installation of Beta Epsilon of Alpha Phi as it is to describe a sunset”. The possible new members of Beta Epsilon dedicated all of their efforts to mastering the intricacies of the chapter roll before their initiation at midnight on Friday where three of the founders and their first new member were initiated. The next day twelve upperclassmen and eleven underclassmen also became new members before the installation banquet that was held Saturday evening at the Santa Rita Hotel. At the banquet, Ina Gittings (Nu-Nebraska) served as toastmistress, Marian Wiley (Nu-Nebraska) read an original poem in response to the “Unbroken Mustangs”, Frances Rogers (Beta Epsilon-Arizona) spoke about the growth of the group in “Cactus and Sand” and Charlee Kelly (Omega-Texas) proposed a toast to all of the active Alpha Phi chapters in “The Rodeo Arena”.