In celebration of Black History Month, Indian River State College (IRSC) presents ‘The Divine Nine’—a salute to the nine original U.S. Black sororities and fraternities. The event is open to the public without charge and takes place on Tuesday, February 22, at 6:00 p.m. in the McAlpin Fine Arts Center on the IRSC Massey Campus in Fort Pierce.
The program includes commentary and perspective on the history and contributions of these sororities and fraternities, with musical selections performed by students from Lincoln Park Academy, Fort Pierce Central High School, Port St. Lucie High School and Fort Pierce Westwood Academy. Refreshments will be served.
“America’s Black fraternities and sororities are a vital part of African American history,” said Adriene Jefferson, IRSC Dean of Northwest Center, Equity Officer/Title IX Coordinator and organizer of the February 22 event. “These nine organizations continue to play an integral role in the advancement of African-Americans, and we invite the community to celebrate with us as we shine a light on their countless contributions.”
‘The Divine Nine’ were established at the start of the 20th century and shared a common goal: to educate and uplift the Black community from racial inequities. Members of these sororities and fraternities were also heavily involved in social justice movements such as the Women’s Suffrage, Civil Rights Movement and Black Lives Matter. These organizations have made significant strides to help unite Black communities across the nation and continue to serve various social causes collectively.
Also known collectively as the National Pan-Hellenic Council, ‘The Divine Nine’ is comprised of:
· Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Founded 1906, Cornell University
· Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Founded 1908, Howard University
· Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Founded 1911, Indiana University
· Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Founded 1911, Howard University
· Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Founded 1913, Howard University
· Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Founded 1914, Howard University
· Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Founded 1920, Howard University
· Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Founded 1922, Butler University
· Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Founded 1963, Morgan State University