Omega Psi Phi History
On Friday evening, November 17, 1911, three Howard University undergraduate students, with the assistance of their faculty adviser, gave birth to the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. This event occurred in the office of biology Professor Ernest E. Just, the faculty adviser, in the Science Hall (now known as Thirkield Hall). The three liberal arts students were Edgar A. Love, Oscar J. Cooper, and Frank Coleman.
From the initials of the Greek phrase meaning "friendship is essential to the soul," the name Omega Psi Phi was derived. The phrase was selected as the motto. Manhood, Scholarship, Perseverance, and Uplift were adopted as cardinal principles. A decision was made regarding the design for the pin and emblem, and thus ended the first meeting of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity.
The next meeting was conducted on November 23, 1911. Edgar Love became the first Grand Basileus (National President). Cooper and Coleman were selected Grandkeeper of the Records (National Secretary) and Grandkeeper of Seals (National Treasurer), respectively. Eleven Howard University undergraduate men were selected as charter members.
Alpha Chapter was organized with fourteen charter members on December 15, 1911. Love, Cooper, and Coleman were elected the chapter's first Basileus, Keeper of Records, and Keeper of Seals, respectively.
On March 8, 1912, the previously submitted fraternity constitution was rejected by the Howard University Faculty Council. The Faculty Council proposed to accept the fraternity as a local but not a national organization. The fraternity refused acceptance as a strictly local organization.
Oscar Cooper became the fraternity's second Grand Basileus in 1912. Cooper authorized the investigation of a proposed second chapter at Lincoln University, Pennsylvania.
Edgar Love was elected as the third Grand Basileus in 1912 and served until 1915. In 1914, Howard University withdrew its opposition, and the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity was incorporated under the laws of the District of Columbia on October 28, 1914. Beta Chapter at Lincoln University was chartered in February 1914.
Phi Omicron History
The Phi Omicron Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Incorporated was chartered on November 1st, 1949. (Grandson Phelps, Percy Steele, John Williams, Louis Wideman, Luther Crawford, James Nobel, E.B. Singleton) in San Diego California. Phi Omicron is the 4th oldest 12th District Graduate Chapter, with distinguished men of all walks of life. The rich traditions of Phi Omicron are exhibited through our members who serve many roles in the Armed services, Medical profession, Judicial system, Clergy, Educators Engineers, Business, and more.
The mission of the Phi Omicron Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity is to be the foremost fraternal organization in San Diego to serve both the Professional and the private community, with professionalism, and brotherhood.
National Mandated Programs
Originally designed to promote the study of Negro life and history. Achievement Week is observed in November of each year and is designed to seek out and give due recognition to those individuals at the local and international levels who have made a noteworthy contribution toward improving the quality of life for black Americans. A High School Essay Contest is to be held in conjunction with Achievement Week. This contest is open to all college-bound high school seniors. College scholarships are awarded to the winners, each of whom must submit an essay on a theme/topic chosen by the fraternity. This contest is a phase of the International Achievement Week observance.
The Scholarship Program is intended to promote academic excellence among the undergraduate members. Graduate chapters are expected to provide financial assistance to student members and non-members. A portion of the fraternity's international budget is allocated to scholarships through the Charles R. Drew Scholarship Commission.
SOCIAL ACTION PROGRAMS
All levels of the fraternity are expected to facilitate, participate, and coordinate activities that will uplift their communities. An international committee will coordinate the multifaceted programs of the various chapters. Some of the activities under the umbrella of social action include, but are not limited to: voter registration, education and “getting out the vote”; Assault on Illiteracy; Habitat for Humanity; volunteering time to charities and less fortunate individuals; mentoring; and participation in fundraisers for charities such as American Diabetes Association, United Way, Sickle Cell Anemia, etc.
TALENT HUNT PROGRAM
This program provides exposure, encouragement, and financial assistance to talented young people participating in the Performing Arts. Winners of the competition are awarded recognition for their talents. Awards may include college scholarships.
March 12th of each year has been established as Memorial Day. Chapters are expected to conduct an appropriate service to recall the memory of those members who have entered into Omega Chapter.
RECLAMATION AND RETENTION
A concerted effort at the international, district, and local levels to retain active brothers and return inactive brothers to full participatory status so that they may enjoy the full benefits of Omega
COLLEGE ENDOWMENT FUND
Each year the fraternity gives at least $50,000.00 to Historically Black College Institutions (HBCU) in furtherance of Omega’s commitment to providing philanthropic support. Chapters are assessed donations based on chapter size.
All levels of the fraternity are expected to facilitate, participate, and/or coordinate activities that will uplift their communities by promoting good health practices. An international committee will coordinate and facilitate multifaceted programs of the various chapters, districts, etc. It is anticipated that all local chapters will execute the health directives at the local level. Some of the programs under the umbrella of Health Initiatives are the Charles Drew Blood Drive (normally held in June), AIDS/HIV Awareness, and the American Diabetes Association Partnership. This does not prevent the local chapters from performing additional health initiatives under the umbrella of the Health Initiatives mandate.
VOTER REGISTRATION, EDUCATION AND MOBILIZATION
All levels of the fraternity are expected to facilitate, participate, and/or coordinate activities that will uplift their communities through the power of the vote. An international committee will coordinate and facilitate multifaceted programs of the various chapters, districts, etc. It is anticipated that all local chapters will execute the directives at the local level. This does not prevent the local chapters from performing additional voter initiatives under the umbrella of the Voter Education, Registration, and Mobilization mandate.
Every district and chapter of the fraternity is required to maintain a Life Membership at Large in the NAACP. In the event that a chapter or district is not a life member of the NAACP, it must maintain a yearly membership to be in Good Standing with the fraternity. Furthermore, all members of the fraternity are strongly encouraged to become members of the NAACP.