The Birth of Honor
In the spring of 1907, a group of commerce students at the University of Wisconsin received permission from the faculty to organize a commerce honor society, which they called Beta Gamma Sigma. The purpose of the Society was to encourage and reward scholarship and accomplishment in the field of business studies among commerce students at the University.
At about the same time, students at the University of Illinois and the University of California felt the need for such an organization on their campuses and respectively organized Delta Kappa Chi (1910) and The Economics Club (1906). In 1913, having become aware of their coexistence and common purpose, representatives of the three societies met at Madison, Wisconsin, to consummate a merger which made Beta Gamma Sigma into a national organization. Henceforth, 1913 would be the officially recognized "birth year" of BGS.
Action was initiated in 1919 to establish Beta Gamma Sigma as the only scholastic honor society recognized by the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). This organization, which was renamed AACSB International - The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, includes in its membership collegiate schools of business that meet rigorous standards of eligibility required of accredited member institutions with respect to curricula, teaching staff, teaching loads, library and laboratory facilities.
Beta Gamma Sigma amended its constitution in 1921 to restrict the installation of new chapters to collegiate schools of business which are accredited members of AACSB International, strengthening an important partnership that lasts to this day.
The following timeline picks up the story, tracing the Society’s history and highlighting many significant milestones: