Sigma Tau Delta is the International English Honor Society. A member of the Association of College Honor Societies, it was founded in 1924 at Dakota Wesleyan University.
The Society strives to
- Confer distinction for high achievement in English language and literature in undergraduate, graduate, and professional studies;
- Provide, through its local chapters, cultural stimulation on college campuses and promote interest in literature and the English language in surrounding communities;
- Foster all aspects of the discipline of English, including literature, language, and writing;
- Promote exemplary character and good fellowship among its members;
- Exhibit high standards of academic excellence; and
- Serve society by fostering literacy.
With over 825 active chapters located in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and the Caribbean, there are more than 1,000 Faculty Sponsors, and approximately 9,000 members inducted annually.
Sigma Tau Delta's central purpose is to confer distinction upon students of the English language and literature in undergraduate, graduate, and professional studies. Sigma Tau Delta also recognizes the accomplishments of professional writers who have contributed to the fields of language and literature.
Sigma Tau Delta is also the proud sponsor of The National English Honor Society (NEHS). NEHS, a program of Sigma Tau Delta, serves students and faculty in high schools throughout the country and provides an outreach to thousands of students and faculty who share a commitment to excellence in English language arts.
Sigma Tau Delta is in partnership with Sigma Kappa Delta (SKD), the English Honor Society for two-year colleges. Sigma Kappa Delta has 100 chapters, and annually partners with Sigma Tau Delta to plan and promote the international convention.
Sigma Tau Delta is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), the nation's only certifying agency for college and university honor societies.
Student membership in Sigma Tau Delta is only by invitation to undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled at a college or university with an active Sigma Tau Delta chapter. It is an outward recognition of personal accomplishment and signifies that those invited to join Sigma Tau Delta have achieved the Society’s high standards of academic excellence. Benefits of membership include:
- Members receive a personalized Sigma Tau Delta membership certificate and the official Society pin to signify high achievement in English language, writing, and literature.
- Members are eligible to apply for a variety of Sigma Tau Delta scholarships valued at up to $5,000 each.
- Members are eligible to apply for a merit-based $1,000 scholarship to attend The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) Summer Institute or Capital Semester. This scholarship is available to one Sigma Tau Delta member per year through a partnership with TFAS and the Association of College Honor Societies.
Writing Awards and Opportunities
- Members may submit papers for publication in The Sigma Tau Delta Rectangle and The Sigma Tau Delta Review. Works selected for publication are also eligible for overall awards and monetary prizes.
- Members may submit articles to Sigma Tau Delta’s online publications, The Sigma Tau Delta Newsletter and WORDY by Nature, the official Sigma Tau Delta blog.
- Members may submit articles to Sigma Tau Delta’s regional publications, where available.
- Members may apply for Sigma Tau Delta co-sponsored internships with a major publisher and an online book store that funds worldwide literacy initiatives.
- Members are eligible for a $500 merit-based scholarship to attend the Washington Internship (WII) internship program through a partnership with WII and the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS).
- Members are eligible to apply for a $1,000 housing scholarship to attend The Washington Center (TWC) internship program through a partnership with TWC and the Association of College Honor Societies. TWC has designated three scholarships per year for Sigma Tau Delta members (both undergraduates and recent college graduates).
- Members may submit papers for presentation at the annual Sigma Tau Delta international convention. Works selected for presentation are also eligible for overall awards and monetary prizes.
- Members who attend the annual convention have opportunities to hear students from throughout the U.S. and abroad present their creative and critical writing, to attend sessions on student leadership and chapter activities, and to listen to presentations by noted authors. Featured speakers at recent conventions include Neil Gaiman (2009), Azar Nafisi (2010), Poet Laureate Kay Ryan (2011), Natasha Trethewey (2012), and Ursula Le Guin (2013).
Student Leadership and Community Service
- Members may compete for officer positions and take part in community service projects at many campus chapters.
- Members may compete for student leadership positions at the regional and Society levels. Student leaders serve on the Sigma Tau Delta Student Leadership Committee and represent student needs and concerns to the Sigma Tau Delta Board of Directors.
- Members may use their honor society affiliation as a tangible sign of academic success to help advance their professional career.
- Members meet one of the U.S. Civil Service Commission requirements for entrance at the GS-7 level in numerous professional and technical occupations in the Federal service, thus beginning employment at a higher level and higher salary.
Lifetime Affiliation and Fellowship
- Members have many opportunities to network with other Sigma Tau Deltans through local chapter activities, regional events, the annual Sigma Tau Delta international convention, and online sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and WORDY by Nature, the official Sigma Tau Delta blog.
- Members who wish to stay connected with the Society after graduation are eligible to join Sigma Tau Delta's Alumni Epsilon Chapter.