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September 11, 1962 - Image 32

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1962-09-11

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Often the springtime visitor sees
strangely dressed (or undressed)r
students undergoing the mild tor-
ture of crawling from the Diag to
the League Fountain or being
showered with brickdust around
an oak tree.
This is not fraternity hazing-
long departed from the University
-but the honoraries initiating.
A neophyte is "tapped" for the
organization by the old members
in a nighttime visit. The lucky
individual generally finds him-
self taken unwittingly from bed,
immersed with water and brick-
dust or oil, and told of his selec-
tion. Public initiation ordeals fol-
low on the Diag, in which the
chosen undergo other tests to
prove their worthiness and self-
dedication to the group.,
Women's Groups

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SAM J. BENJAMIN, '27 Lit. - Owner


Women's honoraries do not tap
in as colorful a manner, but they
too have their traditional cere-
monies in which they show the
public that a new class of women
has been honored for service.
Every men's honorary and the
majority of women's organizations
are strictly local in origin and
present status.
Circle -..
Circle, formed in 1957, strives to
recognize leadership, service and
citizenship in the residence halls,
and promote interest in, these
Two years ago the group, spon-
sored by Assembly Assn., put on
an art show to display the works
of independent women. It, suc-
ceeded so well it is to become an
annual event.
They have also established a
chapter at Michigan State.
Outstanding senior men in
every school but engineering are
eligible for Druids, which chooses
its initiates for achievement in
athletics and activities. "Saplings"
(those tapped) become mighty
trees through plenty of water and
g r e e n brickdust. Duckwalking
around the Diag and the reciting
of Joyce Kilmer's "Trees" also is
a traditional part of the ceremony.
New members are given tree
names which are announced pub-
licly at the initiation. Druids,
named after the forest priests of
old England, was founded in 1909.
Hectorians, founded in 1953, rec-
ognizes and honors outstanding
fraternity men and meets to dis-
cuss fraternity problems.
Members are chosen from the
fraternity presidents, Interfrater-

long yellow ribbon with the names
of all members since the organiza-
tion's founding.
Sphinx ...
A junior men's honorary estab-
lished in 1905, Sphinx chooses neo-
phytes for its courts by the same
standards as the senior groups.
Men may be tapped from all
schools except the engineering col-
lege. Red brick dust and water
transform the neophytes into
Egyptians and then the initiates
must crawl on their stomachs
looking for the River Nile. When
they reach the Nile (usually
known as the League fountain)
they must prove their worth by
a final dip in that body of water.
Members are given secret Egyp-
tian names.
Triangles .. .
Triangles for junior engineers,
is also designed to recognize
achievement and to serve the.
campus. Initiates are abducted in
the night and must find their way
back to campus from an isolated
part of t he county. Then the
public initiation features such
stunts as a human pyramid and
scrubbing the Engineering Arch
with a toothbrush. Triangles was
formed in 1907.
Vulcans .. .
The only mortal acceptable in
the eyes of the god Vulcan is a
senior engineer who has served
the University in activities or
athletics. Neophytes are abducted
in the night and taken out of
town to find their way back to
campus. Then they undergo a
public initiation by blacking them-
selves with oil, chaining them-
selves to each other and carrying
torches through the underground
steam tunnels. Each member is
given a mythological name of a
god and the society, formed in
1904, works to serve the engineer-
ing college and the University as
a whole.
Wyvern, also a local group, hon-
ors girls who are active on cam-
pus and have high scholastic aver-
.The sophomores are tapped
during dinner by a line of girls
singing, "Damn, damn, damn to
Michigamua, to hell wtih Sphinx
and Vulcans, too, to the Druids
and the rest, for we know we are
the best, we are Wyvern's daugh-
ters tried and true."
The following day, the new
members wear yellow slickers, hair
ribbons and roses.
Wyvern is not a service society
because it believes that these girls
are too busy for an added activity.

nity Council officers, and Frater-
nity Buyer's Association.
Michigamua.. .
The Tribe of Michigamua is an
all-campus senior men's honorary
for excellence in activities and
athletics. Members dress for
"Rope Day" (initiation day) in
Indian costume and turn the
chosen palefaces into young braves
through an ordeal that takes the
selected ones on a duckwalk
journey "seven flights up and
seven flights down" the Michigan
Union. Initiates are doused with
brickdust and water and are given
secret Indian names, revealed only
at the end of the year at the next
Rope Day. Founded in 1901 to
serve the University, Michigamua
is the oldest extant campus hon-
The national senior women's
honor society,. Mortarboard, is the
first of the senior women's groups
to tap in the spring.
Members, chosen for service,
leadership, and scholarship, must
have a 3.0 average. The girls tap

at midnight clad in caps and
gowns, singing their song, "Thy
Ideals." New members wear mortar
boards the next day.
The Michigan chapter, Pi Sigma
Alpha, was one of four founding
chapters in 1918. There are now
Quadrants.. .
The Quadrants is the honorary
of the quadrangles. Having chap-
ters in each quad, the group rec-
ognizes leadership in house and
quadrangle affairs. ,
Scabbard and Blade...
Participants in either of the
three ROTC programs are selected
on-the basis of leadership, patrio-
tism, efficiency, loyalty and honor
for Scabbard and Blade.
Initiates are tapped in the star-
light with sabers, and during the
trial period must guard the lions
and defend the scabbard and blade
in front of the flagpole.
The group's purpose is to raise
the standards of military educa-
tion and spread information on
military service careers.

Another local organization, Scroll
honors senior affiliated women for
leadership, character and loyalty.
Members are tapped after hours
by the group singing, "Out of the
night comes a sound of voices.
Scroll is' now tapping its loyal
Its purpose is to promote cooper-
ation between alumnae and stu-
dents and further interest in cam-
pus activities. It also grants a
$100 scholarship to a junior affili-
ated woman on the basis of leader-
ship and need.,
Senior Society...
Senior Society recognizes inde-
pendent women with high scholas-
tic averages who have actively
served their dormitories.
Girls recommended by their
house directors and presidents are
tapped by members singing, "In
and out the halls we wander
singing as we go; of the girls we're
going to favor with our pin of
black and gold."
During the initiation ceremony,
each member's name is added to a

RITES OF SPRING-Druid initiates are inducted into the honorary in the annual, unchanging cere-
monies. This is one of several initiations which occur each spring as the honoraries induct the cam-
pus's well-known students into the folds.

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