Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Develops Leaders, Promotes Brotherhood and Academic Excellence While Providing Service and Advocacy for Our Communities.
ETA NU LAMBDA CHAPTER - GRAND RAPIDS, MI
ALPHA PHI ALPHA FRATERNITY INC.
BRIEF NATIONAL HISTORY
Since its founding on December 4, 1906, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. has supplied voice and vision to the struggle of African-Americans and people of color around the world.
Alpha Phi Alpha, the first intercollegiate Greek-letter fraternity established for African-Americans, was founded at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York by seven college men who recognized the need for a strong bond of Brotherhood among African descendants in this country. The visionary founders, known as the “Jewels” of the Fraternity, are Henry Arthur Callis, Charles Henry Chapman, Eugene Kinckle Jones, George Biddle Kelley, Nathaniel Allison Murray, Robert Harold Ogle, and Vertner Woodson Tandy.
The Fraternity initially served as a study and support group for minority students who faced racial prejudice, both educationally and socially, at Cornell. The Jewel founders and early leaders of the Fraternity succeeded in laying a firm foundation for Alpha Phi Alpha's principles of scholarship, fellowship, good character, and the uplifting of humanity.
Alpha Phi Alpha chapters were established at other colleges and universities, many of them historically black institutions, soon after the founding at Cornell. The first Alumni Chapter was established in 1911. While continuing to stress academic excellence among its members, Alpha also recognized the need to help correct the educational, economic, political, and social injustices faced by African-Americans.
Alpha Phi Alpha has long stood at the forefront of the African-American community's fight for civil rights through leaders such as: W.E.B. DuBois, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., Edward Brooke, Martin Luther King, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Andrew Young, William Gray, Paul Robeson, and many others. True to its form as the “first of firsts,” Alpha Phi Alpha has been interracial since 1945. Today, Alpha Phi Alpha exceeds 150,000 members and has over 700 chapters in the 50 United States and Internationally in Bermuda, England, Liberia, South Korea, the Virgin Islands, South Africa, and West Germany.
The fraternity’s national programs are community outreach mentoring initiatives that have been adopted by the organization’s governing body and mandated for implementation by all of its chapters.
Brother’s Keeper ®
Formally called the A. Charles Haston Brother's Keeper program, this service program developed with the mission of advocating and improving the quality of life for Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. brothers, their spouses, and widows who are retired, are elders, have disabilities and are ailing.
A Voteless People is a Hopeless People®
"A Voteless People is a Hopeless People" (aka VPHP) was initiated as a National Program of Alpha during the 1930's when many African-Americans had the right to vote but were prevented from voting because of poll taxes, threats of reprisal, and lack of education about the voting process. Voter education and registration have remained a dominant focus of this outreach activity for over 65 years. In the 1990's, the focus has shifted to include political awareness and empowerment, delivered most frequently through town meetings and candidate forums.
Go-to-High-School, Go-to-College ®
The "Go-to-High-School, Go-to-College" program, established in 1922, concentrates on the importance of completing secondary and collegiate education as a road to advancement.
Project Alpha ®
This collaborative project is designed to provide education, motivation, and skill-building on issues of responsibility, relationships, teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases for young males ages 12-15 years. Designed to provide young men with current and accurate information about teen pregnancy prevention, Project Alpha consists of a series of workshops and informational sessions conducted by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity brothers.
Alpha Phi Alpha’s Special Initiatives are programs and activities that are sustained through collaborative efforts, memoranda of understanding, and/or outside financial assistance, which Alpha chapters are encouraged to implement.
Big Brothers / Big Sisters of America
The Big Brothers/Big Sisters of America program was implemented during the fraternity's 1990 General Convention.The two organizations signed an agreement to assist each other in reaching their goals of working toward the positive development of African-American youth and empowering their families and communities.
Boy Scouts of America
The Boy Scouts of America and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity have goals and objectives which make for a "natural alliance" between the two organizations. Through this alliance, the two organizations are achieving their goals by utilizing the Scouting program to its greatest potential as a programming resource.
College Life to Corporate Life Initiative (C2C) ®
The College Life to Corporate Life Initiative (C2C) was created to develop the human resources of Alpha Phi Alpha and cultivate mutually beneficial relationships with corporate partners resulting in rewarding career opportunities for the members of Alpha Phi Alpha and increased critical mass of diverse talent for its corporate partners.
Leadership Development Institute (LDI) ™
The mission is to develop a 21st century generation of leaders. This mission starts with young people, particularly those who demonstrate the potential to comprehend and apply the fundamental principles needed by leaders as well as whom, by virtue of their age and education, are often looked upon as role models. Thus, the Institute, which is implemented in five regions, seeks to equip high school students, primarily sophomores to seniors, with vital leadership skills.
Alpha Phi Alpha and the preeminent international service organization of the United States, the Peace Corps, has entered into a partnership that will send brothers abroad to tackle the most pressing needs of people around the world. Brothers who serve as Peace Corps Volunteers work at the grassroots level toward sustainable change that lives on long after their service—at the same time becoming global citizens and serving their country. When brothers return home, they bring their knowledge and experiences—and a global outlook—that enriches the lives of their communities.
Alpha’ Phi Alpha's constant efforts of increasing the educational, economic, and social well-being of the Black people in the United States are unmatched. These efforts are evident in our direct participation in numerous national organizations and our financial contributions to their programs oriented to handle problem areas such as civil rights, poor housing, and inadequate education of our youth.
Alpha Phi Alpha is a proud creator and fundraiser for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in Washington D.C.
In addition, Alpha's philanthropic work has been supported by a plethora of national partners including:
March of Dimes
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
United Negro College Fund
National Urban League
American Cancer Society
National Education Association
For more detailed information about Alpha Phi Alpha, please visit our national website www.apa1906.net/