Zeta Tau Alpha

Chapter History

In the fall of 1975, Elizabeth Hammitt transferred to Wofford College from the College of Charleston, where she was a member of Eta Lambda Chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha. Letters were exchanged between Elizabeth, alumnae, and school administrators. On November 11, 1975 an informal meeting was held for all females interested in establishing a national sorority at Wofford. December 2, 1975 was the first rush party for this national sorority. Mrs. Martha Helms attended as well as the sisters of Beta Omicron chapter from USC. the Board of Trustees approved the charter to begin a Zeta Tau Alpha colony at Wofford on December 8, 1975, which served as the official beginning of Theta Zeta.

Theta Zeta held its first pledge ceremony on December 10, 1975, picking up five members for Theta Zeta and five new sisters-to-be for Elizabeth Hammitt. In the spring of 1976 rush was again a success as Theta Zeta picked up four more girls. the summer of 1976 brought sizable recognition to Theta Zeta and to one of her members, Hyla Hope. At the International Convention held in New Orleans, Hyla was asked to be one of the two pledges in the entire Zeta organization to be initiated at the convention. It was the first time ever that a pledge was initiated as a part of a convention.

By the fall of 1977 and after the recruitment of eight new members, it was within the realm of possibility that the colony could soon be installed, making it a full chapter. In October of 1977 we gained another girl, Grace Lowe. This moved the number of girls up to 16, within range for installation and initiation. Not long after Grace joined, another Wofford woman was added: Shepherd O'Brien. With the addition of the 17th girl, Nationals gave the colony the go-ahead for installation and initiation. What the original members worked so hard for was finally within sight. On Friday, February3, 1978, 16 members of Theta Zeta were initiated into the higher realms of the Fraternity.

The day finally came. On Saturday, February 4, 1978, Mrs. Martha Helms, Mrs. Shirley Weaver, and the initiating team from Frances Marion College, USC, and the College of Charleston all helped to make Theta Zeta Colony become the Theta Zeta Chapter. That same evening, a recognition banquet was held in honor of the new chapter. Representatives from Province and Nationals gave gifts and added the 179th link of chapters to the complete chain of links.

Today, Theta Zeta is a thriving, successful chapter of over 120 young women dedicated to the motto of the Fraternity. We pride ourselves in our excellence in academics, service, and campus involvement on an individual, chapter, and national level. We are proud to currently stand ranked as the #6 Chapter in Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity! What a long way we have come since our humble beginnings, and we are eternally thankful for all the woman who help us to achieve what we have today.