Omega Phi Alpha
ΩΦΑ
Coatarms color.jpg
FoundedJune 15, 1967; 55 years ago (1967-06-15)
Bowling Green State University
TypeService
ScopeNational
MottoToday's Friends, Tomorrow's Leaders, Forever in Service
Colors  Dark Blue

  Light Blue

  Gold[1][2]
SymbolChevron, Bee
FlowerYellow Rose
MascotBumblebee
PublicationThe Chevron
Chapters30
HeadquartersPO Box 955
East Lyme, Connecticut, 06333
US
Websitehttp://www.omegaphialpha.org

Omega Phi Alpha (ΩΦΑ) is an American national service sorority. It was founded in 1967 at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio. Omega Phi Alpha, also known as OPhiA or OPA, currently has thirty active chapters in the United States.

Purpose

The purpose of Omega Phi Alpha reads as follows:

The purpose and goals of this sorority shall be to assemble its members in the fellowship of Omega Phi Alpha, to develop friendship, leadership, and cooperation by promoting service to the university community, to the community-at-large, to the members of the sorority, and to the nations of the world.

History

In 1953, the Zeta Kappa chapter of Alpha Phi Omega, a national service fraternity, expressed interest in forming a group much like theirs to help them in their service endeavors. The brothers of Zeta Kappa formed interest groups for a new organization, and many of the attendees at these interest groups were women. The need for a female service sorority then became evident.

The two groups were to be alike in objectives—friendship, leadership, and service. A similar name—Omega Phi Alpha—was chosen for the new organization. Just as the Alpha Phi Omega chapter was limited to former Boy Scouts, the Omega Phi Alpha chapter was originally limited to former Girl Scouts and Campfire Girls.[3] This limitation continued until 1958.

Two more Omega Phi Alpha groups were formed at Eastern Michigan University and the University of Bridgeport in 1958 and 1962, respectively. All three groups had the intention of becoming a national sorority together; however, it would be five more years before national status was reached.

In 1966, plans for a national convention, at which the three chapters could meet, were made. In the summer of 1967, the three groups met in Bowling Green for the first time and laid the foundations for what is currently Omega Phi Alpha. The Bowling Green group was given the title of Alpha chapter, University of Bridgeport became the Beta chapter, and Eastern Michigan was named the Gamma chapter.

The Alpha, Beta, and Gamma chapters continued for several years as a national sorority until women at Texas A&M University formed the Delta chapter in 1970. Currently, there are thirty-one active chapters of Omega Phi Alpha. Additionally, there are ten inactive chapters and eight alumnae chapters.

Service program

Omega Phi Alpha has a diverse, flexible service program which allows each member to contribute to the world around her. Many chapters have ongoing projects that they have worked with for years.

Six areas of service:

1. Permanent Project: The permanent project is mental health. Mental health service projects are defined as any project that improves the well being of others, and these projects are typically hands on projects such as playing with kids in an afterschool program, playing Bingo at a nursing home, or serving meals at a soup kitchen.

2. President's Project: Each year at Omega Phi Alpha National Convention, the National President of Omega Phi Alpha presents the cause she feels is worthy of being the focus of OPA service nationwide.

3. Service to the University Community: Volunteering to help at a school event, holding stress relief classes, random acts of kindness

4. Service to the Community at Large: Local park clean ups, food banks, tutoring at a local school, Humane Society volunteering

5. Service to the members of the sorority: Alumnae, internal strengthening

6. Service to the nations of the world: UNICEF, AIDS Awareness, diabetes awareness (American Diabetes Association), breast cancer awareness (Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, among others)

Through these six areas of service, active and alumnae chapters plan a variety of service projects year each to carry out and make a difference.

Chapters

Active chapters

These are the current active chapters of Omega Phi Alpha.[28][29] Generally, chapters of Omega Phi Alpha are named in Greek alphabetical order. The only exception to this is the Penn State chapter, which was founded from a local sorority named Theta Alpha Pi. This chapter was named Alpha Theta as a tribute to their founding organization.

Chapter letters given out of order to honor the name of the local which joined, Theta Alpha Pi[30]

Inactive chapters

These are the current inactive chapters of Omega Phi Alpha[29]

Convention

Omega Phi Alpha holds one national convention every other year. The national conventions provide a forum for making sorority-wide decisions like aligning on a budget, electing national officers, or changing the national policies reflected in the constitution and by-laws. Each active chapter in good standing has two votes to use in deciding sorority issues. Active chapters who are not in good standing have only one vote. There are also alumnae delegates who represent each of OPA's four districts. For every three active votes, alumnae get one vote.

OPA national convention locations include:[34][35]

Year Location Theme Dates Refs
1967 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter June 12, 1967June 15, 1967 [36][37]
1968 Bridgeport, Connecticut hosted by Beta chapter July 11, 1968July 14, 1968 [38]
1969 Ypsilanti, Michigan hosted by Gamma chapter June 16, 1969June 19, 1969 [39]
1970 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter 1970
1971 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter June 1971 [40][41]
1972 Ypsilanti, Michigan hosted by Gamma chapter June 30, 1972July 2, 1972 [42]
1973 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter June 1973 [43]
1974 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter June 25, 1974June 28, 1974 [44]
1975 Bridgeport, Connecticut hosted by Beta chapter June 18, 1975June 22, 1975 [45]
1976 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter June 17, 1976June 20, 1976 [46]
1977 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter Happy Tenth Birthday June 15, 1977June 19, 1977 [47]
1978 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter Raggedy Ann Goes South June 21, 1978June 25, 1978 [48]
1979 Amarillo, Texas & Plainview, Texas hosted by Zeta chapter & Eta chapter July 10, 1979July 15, 1979 [49]
1980 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter The Yellow Rose of Texas June 18, 1980June 22, 1980 [50]
1981 Bridgeport, Connecticut hosted by Beta chapter June 20, 1981 [51]
1982 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter All of Tomorrow Depends On Today...Upon You June 16, 1982June 20, 1982 [52]
1983 Columbus, Ohio hosted by Kappa chapter Create!......Relate!.......Motivate! August 3, 1983August 7, 1983 [12]
1984 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter Hit the Trail for "The Wild Wild West" August 1, 1984August 5, 1984 [53]
1985 Murfreesboro, Tennessee hosted by Mu chapter OPA in for A Dixieland Delight August 6, 1985August 10, 1985 [14][54]
1986 Bridgeport, Connecticut hosted by Beta chapter August 11, 1986August 17, 1986 [55]
1987 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter 20th anniversary August 4, 1987August 8, 1987 [56]
1988 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter 1988
1989 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter 1989
1990 Atlanta, Georgia hosted by Nu chapter 1990 [5]
1991 Bridgeport, Connecticut hosted by Beta chapter Convention '91 – Barnum and Beta Circus July 29, 1991August 4, 1991 [57]
1992 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter Omega Phi Alpha 25 Years of Excellence July 29, 1992August 2, 1992 [58]
1993 Bowling Green, Ohio hosted by Alpha chapter Celebrate Cardinal Principles July 29, 1993August 1, 1993 [59]
1994 Auburn, Alabama hosted by Omicron chapter Sisterhood in the Heart of Dixie July 27, 1994July 31, 1994 [17][60]
1995 Atlanta, Georgia hosted by Nu chapter 1995
1996 Chattanooga, Tennessee hosted by Sigma chapter 1996
1997 Cookeville, Tennessee hosted by Epsilon chapter 1997
1998 College Station, Texas hosted by Delta chapter 1998
1999 Columbus, Ohio 1999
2000 Baton Rouge, Louisiana 2000
2001 San Antonio, Texas July 18, 2001July 22, 2001 [61]
2002 Radisson Hotel & Suites, Chicago, Illinois July 17, 2002July 21, 2002 [62][63][64]
2003 Renaissance Waverly Hotel Atlanta, Georgia July 30, 2003August 2, 2003 [65]
2004 Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt University Nashville, Tennessee July 14, 2004July 18, 2004 [66]
2005 Embassy Suites Biltmore Hotel Phoenix, Arizona Service at the Oasis July 20, 2005July 24, 2005 [67]
2006 Hilton Hartford Hotel Hartford, Connecticut Service in the City July 19, 2006July 23, 2006 [68]
2007 Wyndham Jacksonville Riverwalk Jacksonville, Florida Service is our Greatest Treasure July 25, 2007July 29, 2007 [69]
2008 Doubletree North Denver Denver, Colorado Rockin' in the Rockies July 16, 2008July 20, 2008 [70]
2009 Crowne Plaza Center City Philadelphia, Pennsylvania City of Sisterly Love July 22, 2009July 26, 2009 [71][72]
2010 Drury Plaza Hotel at the Arch St. Louis, Missouri Destination O-Phi-A July 21, 2010July 25, 2010 [73]
2011 Holiday Inn, Charlotte, North Carolina Queens of Service in the Queen City. July 20, 2011July 24, 2011 [74][75]
2012 Radisson Hotel, Salt Lake City, Utah Abuzz about OPhiA July 11, 2012July 15, 2012 [74]
2013 DoubleTree Hotel, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Women of Steel July 18, 2013July 21, 2013 [74]
2014 Hilton Indianapolis Downtown, Indianapolis, Indiana Taking the Lead in Service July 16, 2014July 20, 2014 [74]
2015 DoubleTree Hotel, Chattanooga, Tennessee Woo, woo, Chattanooga there you are July 15, 2015July 19, 2015 [74]
2016 Tempe Mission Palms, Phoenix, Arizona Sunshine & Sisterhood July 14, 2016July 17, 2016
2017 Hilton Garden Inn, Perrysburg, Ohio 50th Anniversary June 14, 2017June 18, 2017
2019 Hilton Norfolk the Main, Norfolk, Virginia July 10, 2019July 14, 2019

Districts

Omega Phi Alpha has ten districts of active chapters. Each district is encouraged to meet at once a year and required to hold a district summit in the convention off year, which includes service projects, workshops, and sisterhood activities. Alumni ties were removed from districts and changed to regions at Convention 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.[76]

Regions

Omega Phi Alpha has seven regions of alumni. Alumni regions are drawn on state lines and are based on population distribution of OPA alumni. Each alumni region sends a specific number of delegates to OPhiA's National Convention every year; this number is based on the number of active votes possible at that year's Convention. Alumni representation makes up 25% of the total representation at any given Convention.

References

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