Patrick Schmitt of Pittsboro among 223 students inducted into Phi Beta Kappa at UNC-Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC – Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest and most honored college honorary society, has inducted 223 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill students as new members. 

UNC-Chapel Hill bell tower. (photo by Gene Galin)

Among these honorees is Patrick Schmitt, a senior with statistics and analytics and mathematics majors, of Pittsboro. 

The recent induction ceremony featured remarks by Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz and Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Robert A. Blouin, and a keynote address by Dr. John McGowan, Hanes Professor of English and Comparative Literature Emeritus. 

Phi Beta Kappa membership is open to undergraduates in the College of Arts & Sciences and professional degree programs who meet stringent eligibility requirements. 

A student who has completed 75 hours of course work in the liberal arts and sciences with a GPA of 3.85 or better on a 4-point scale, is eligible for membership. Also eligible is any student who has completed 105 hours of course work in the liberal arts and sciences with a 3.75 GPA. Grades earned at other universities are not considered. Less than one percent  of all college students qualify. 

Past and present Phi Beta Kappa members from across the country have included 17 American presidents, 42 U.S. Supreme Court Justices, more than 150 Nobel Laureates, and numerous artistic, intellectual, and political leaders. 

Phi Beta Kappa has 290 chapters nationwide. UNC-Chapel Hill’s chapter, Alpha of North Carolina, was founded in 1904 and is the oldest of seven chapters in the state. Each year, Phi Beta Kappa chapters and alumni associations across the country raise and distribute more than $1 million in awards, scholarships and prizes benefiting high schools and college students. 

Phi Beta Kappa officers at Carolina for 2021-2022 are students Kennedy Miller, president; Lucas Cain, vice president; and Mary Virginia Glennon, recording secretary. James L. Leloudis, professor of history, Peter T. Grauer associate dean for Honors Carolina, and director of the James M. Johnston Center for Undergraduate Excellence, is chapter executive secretary and faculty advisor.