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The Phi Sigma Pi Historian Training and Transition Manual intends to assist chapter historians in having a successful term as historian and learning more about the responsibilities of historian. This guide is not intended as specific or required direction on any topic, and it does not serve as substitute or supersede any direction on events, funding, or risk management areas (e.g. insurance) given by the National Governing Documents or the National Office.

About the Position

The role of the Phi Sigma Pi Chapter Historian is one of great responsibility. It can also be quite rewarding. The following document is a guide to help you have a successful term as the Chapter Historian.

According to the Phi Sigma PI National Constitution, there are four aspects of the role of chapter historian. It should be noted, however, that this document is not all-inclusive for each chapter. These should be considered the minimum duties and your school/chapter may choose to assign further duties at their discretion.

Responsibilities of the Historian

According to the National Constitution, Article XI, Section 10, The historian shall:

  • Keep, Collect and preserve an accurate history of the chapter
  • Be responsible for placing news items concerning the chapter in local and collegiate publications
  • Provide the National Office with historical Items of the Chapter at the close of the academic year at the Chapter's discretion.
  • Be a voting Member of the Executive Board at the Chapter's discretion.

Responsibilities of the Historian Explained

Keeping, collecting, and preserving an accurate history of the chapter

Every brother in Phi Sigma Pi should have a basic understanding of national and chapter history. This common heritage is the thread that binds all brothers and chapters together. As chapter historian, one should ensure that the initation program includes learning the chapter and national fraternity's history. He or she must also keep accurate records and history of the chapter and its activities. This can be done in a variety of ways. These include, but are not limited to creating a "Chapter Scrapbook" with photos, clippings, and highlights through out the year, Chapter Highlights which can highlight the main points and significant occasions of each semester.

Be Responsible for placing news items concerning the chapter in local and collegiate publications

According to the Constitution, Historian's are responsible for placing news items in local and collegiate publications. News items can include press releases to celebrate the most recent Initiate Class in hometown and/or local newspapers, press releases noting the accomplishments of the collegiate chapter and/or brothers, announcements of chapter service events, recruitment advertisements, and etc.

Provide the National Office with historical items of the chapter at the close of the academic year and at the Chapter's discretion

As the semester/quarter comes to a close, the chapter historian should compile all recorded information into a report to send to the National Headquarters along with the Chapter End of Semester/Quarter Report (Form 110). This report should also be used to brief the new historian on his/her duties and familiarize them with any on-going activities, special events, and procedures used to fulfill your responsibilities as historian.

The National Office also encourages chapters to send any item of historical relevance such as photographs, slides, articles written about the chapter, chapter composites, etc.

Other Tasks of the Historian

The following is a list of other responsibilities not explicitly state in the constitution but mentioned in past Leadership Institute Expo Newsletters.

  • Creating a Genealogy- An important aspect of the historian role that can be overlooked is genealogy. Putting together family trees is one of the best ways to record history, and to preserve it. One can get help with family trees by contacting the National Headquarters with questions on who was inducted and when. Additionally keeping track of this information on your chapter's wiki page can be a useful reference to ensure preservation.
  • Prepare a Power Point Presentation for prospective members- A Power Point presentation is also a very good visual tool to promote Phi Sigma PI at chapter "meet nights," during rush/recruitment. These tools can demonstrate the type and scope of chapter activities.
  • Train and assist successors in office.- Officer training is vital to the continued success of a chapter. Chapters can elect officers early so that current officer and newly-elected officers have the chance to work together before the newly-elected officer takes office.
  • Chapter Wiki Page - The chapter historian is an ideal office to be responsible for updating your chapter wiki page with chapter history, initiate classes and current officers.

Further Resources


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Resource Guides
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