About Sigma Pi Sigma
Overview - Membership - What
Membership Means - Cost
of Membership - Benefits
Sigma Pi Sigma exists to honor outstanding
scholarship in physics; to encourage interest in physics among students
at all levels; to promote an attitude of service of its members
towards their fellow students, colleagues, and the public; to provide
a fellowship of persons who have excelled in physics. Sigma Pi Sigma’s
mission is not completed in the induction ceremony with the recognition
of academic accomplishment. In the four dimensions of Honor, Encouragement,
Service, and Fellowship, the mission of Sigma Pi Sigma takes a longer
Founded in 1921, Sigma Pi Sigma is a member
honor society of the Association of College Honor Societies. Our
society has some 75,000 historical members. Election to Sigma Pi
Sigma is a lifetime membership.
of Physics Students (SPS) was formed in 1968 with the union
of Sigma Pi Sigma and the AIP Student Sections. Today Sigma Pi Sigma
is housed within the SPS.
Sigma Pi Sigma chapters are restricted
to colleges and universities of recognized standing that offer a
strong physics major. The chapters receive into membership undergraduate
and graduate students, faculty members, and a few others in closely
related fields. Students elected to membership must attain high
standards of general scholarship and outstanding achievement in
Certain high numerical standards for admittance
are established by chapter bylaws and the national constitution.
Undergraduate candidates must be in the upper one-third of their
class in general scholarship to meet the minimum standard that chapters
may use. A higher minimum average is often established for physics
courses. Undergraduate candidates must have completed at least three
semesters of full-time college work and at least three semester
courses in physics that can be credited toward a physics major.
Graduate students and faculty members may be elected at any time.
Students who are not physics majors can be elected, provided that
they meet the standards and have demonstrated an interest in physics.
A chapter can elect to active membership
qualified students and faculty members in nearby colleges that do
not have a Sigma Pi Sigma chapter. Physicists in industry and government
laboratories, as well as secondary school physics teachers, can
be elected on the basis of their professional record.
What Membership in Sigma Pi Sigma Means
Sigma Pi Sigma is the official honor society
of the physics profession. Through election to Sigma Pi Sigma, distinctive
achievement and high scholarship in physics is recognized and celebrated.
By honoring high achievement in physics
and upholding high standards for election into Sigma Pi Sigma, the
Society provides an incentive for all physics students to rise to
excellence. The Society also encourages physics interest and science
literacy in the general public.
With the recognition of accomplishment
comes a responsibility to service. As persons who earned our Sigma
Pi Sigma insignia pins by midnight oil, we appreciate the struggles
of fellow students and colleagues who are facing similar challenges.
When our experience and resources are placed at their service, then
Sigma Pi Sigma touches more lives than may be counted by the number
of its members. Because we respect the struggle for excellence,
we support the generations of students that follow us.
Sigma Pi Sigma members cut across generational
lines. The first members were inducted in 1921. New members are
added every year. This represents many generations of experience
and wisdom that can be brought to bear on matters of common interest
to all members.
Sigma Pi Sigma members cut across professional lines.
Besides physicists, many members of other professions also enrich
our ranks, uniting a diverse group of people who have shared in
the culture and traditions of physics, and have demonstrated that
they could excel in it.
With this common thread of a shared background in
physics running through so rich a diversity of generations and professions,
and with the publications and meetings of the Society available
for communication instruments, Sigma Pi Sigma nurtures a spirit
of professional community among its members, and encourages them
to offer their collective wisdom and perspectives in the service
Cost of Membership
Induction into Sigma Pi Sigma is a lifetime membership. Each new member pays to the National Office an entrance fee of $54.00 at the time of their reception into Sigma Pi Sigma. This fee includes a one-year membership in the Society of Physic Students (SPS), or a one-year extension of membership for current SPS members.
The fee includes the cost of the official lapel pin, a certificate
of membership, and a membership card. There are no annual dues to
Sigma Pi Sigma or special assessment other than the original entrance
fee. The entrance fee must be paid prior to reception into membership.
Sigma Pi Sigma fees pay a portion of the cost of operations of
the society. The remainder comes from SPS dues, alumni contributions,
and AIP funds.
Voluntary contributions of Sigma Pi Sigma members fund several annual programs that support undergraduate physics including:
- Sigma Pi Sigma Chapter Project Awards
- Community outreach physics
programs for grades K-12
- Encouragement to
future science teachers
- Awards for undergraduate
- Grants for student presentations
at professional meetings
- Recognition for faculty
- Programs for summer
donations are now accepted.
Benefits of Membership
In addition to the the official lapel pin, certificate of membership and membership
card, all members of Sigma Pi Sigma receive complimentary subscriptions to Radiations Magazine,
the official publication of Sigma Pi Sigma. Members also receive notice
of events through quarterly emails from the Sigma Pi Sigma Director.
Sigma Pi Sigma members also have the opportunity to engage with our online communities, attend local
Sigma Pi Sigma and SPS events as a way to share their experiences
with the younger members of the physics community, to network with
their peers, to keep up with the latest trends in physics, and
to meet new people. Find out what's going on in your region using
the contact information in the SPS/Sigma
Pi Sigma Directory.
Another benefit available to you as a member
of Sigma Pi Sigma is access to the APSIT
Group Insurance Program.
These Group Insurance Plans include:
The APSIT Group Term Life, 10 Year Level Term, Disability Income,
Personal Accident & Hospital Indemnity Plans are underwritten
by the New York Life Insurance Company (New York Life). The Long
Term Care Plan is underwritten by The Hartford Life Insurance Company.
The Catastrophe Major Medical Plan is underwritten by THE UNITED
STATES LIFE Insurance Company.