International Badge Day Part II

This year’s theme for International Badge Day is, “Wear Your Letters on Your Heart.” But, did you know that some groups didn’t start out wearing their badges over their heart? There was a point in time when some sorority women wore their badges in their hair. What a great sorority badge history fact. Read more about the history of our member groups’ badges below and each Monday leading up to Monday, March 5.

Sigma Sigma Sigma:
• The skull and crossed bones on the badge represent Sigma Sigma Sigma's public motto "Faithful Unto Death."
• Mr. L. G. Balfour, Tri Sigma’s longtime official jeweler, stated of our badge, “It has been the aim of the manufacturer of the Sigma Sigma Sigma badge to evolve a design majestic without severity, impressive without showiness, and emphatic in its simplicity.”
• The only man entitled to wear the official Triangle Badge was James Miller Leake, KS, who worked with the leadership to create the Sorority’s beautiful initiatory ritual, the Triangle Degree, representing full membership.

Sigma Delta Tau:
• The Torch badge of Sigma Delta Tau was chosen by its founders in 1917 as a symbol of freedom and leadership to light the way for others.
• The jeweled torch is adorned by five pearls on the crossbar and one on its handle. These pearls represent the six principles of membership in SDT: philanthropy, sisterhood, health and social awareness, lifelong membership and community service.
• A diamond brightens the flame, representing scholarship, SDT’s most important value.

Kappa Kappa Gamma:
• The six Founders of Kappa Kappa Gamma chose the golden key as the badge of Kappa Kappa Gamma and announced themselves on campus in 1870 after their badges arrived from the jeweler.
• Though some guessed the key was chosen to lock up the secrets of their sisterhood, the Founders noted that they chose the key as a symbol of their purpose in “unlocking the hidden mysteries in Science, Literature and Art.”
• The badge of Lucy Webb Hayes is held in the collections of the Division of Politics and Reform at the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of American History and is occasionally displayed with the First Ladies’ dresses.

Alpha Omicron Pi:
• Desiring a badge that indicated "our determined simplicity: one motto, one badge, one bond - and singleness of heart," our Founders determined this would be best achieved with a monogram of the letters A - O and II, one superimposed over the other.
• In 1897, the Founders rode bicycles from Barnard College down New York's Fifth Avenue to Theodore B. Starr's Jewelers to have their badges designed. Decades later, Founder Stella Perry would add to her story, "Fancy girls going down Broadway and Fifth Avenue on bicycles today!"
• In keeping with the ideal of simplicity, AOII's badge is worn alone, over the heart, and should never be attached to another pin or dangle.

Alpha Sigma Alpha:
• The Greek letters depict the sorority name and the words of the open motto “Aspire, Seek, Attain.”
• Each of the four points of the badge represent one of the four aims of Alpha Sigma Alpha: physical, intellectual, spiritual and social development, and the badge may be set with jewels such as pearls, rubies, and diamonds.
• The original badge of Alpha Sigma Alpha was a shield with a star and crown. It was changed in 1903 to the design that it holds today.