College of Arts and Sciences

Department of History

Phi Alpha Theta insigniaPhi Alpha Theta

International History Honor Society
Gamma Psi Chapter


  • Brian Cieslak
  • Zoe Freese
  • Stephanie Griffin
  • Frederick Hardyway
  • James Kernan
  • James Lillis
  • Erin McKee
  • Natalie Page
  • Shannon Rodman
  • Sarah Schraeder
  • Allison Sellers
  • Brittni Wenstrom


Phi Alpha Theta is composed of chapters in properly accredited colleges and universities. All students in these institutions who have completed the required number of history courses and are maintaining high standards in their college or university studies are eligible for membership (see below).

Phi Alpha Theta is a professional society whose purpose is to promote the study of history through the encouragement of research, good teaching, publication, and the exchange of learning and ideas among historians. It seeks to bring students, teachers, and writers of history together both intellectually and socially, and it encourages and assists historical research and publication by its members in a variety of ways.


The Gamma Psi chapter of Phi Alpha Theta at Washington State University is open to both undergraduate and graduate students on the Pullman campus who meet the following criteria.

The requirements for undergraduates include:

  • Completion of at least two semesters at WSU.
  • Completion of 12 semester credits of history (6 of which must be from WSU).
  • WSU overall grade point average of at least 3.0.
  • History grade point average of at least 3.1.
  • Payment of a lifetime membership fee (currently $50).

The requirements for graduate students include:

  • Completion of 12 semester hours towards a graduate degree in history.
  • GPA of 3.5 or higher.
  • Completion of approximately 30% of the residence requirements for their degree.
  • Payment of a lifetime membership fee (currently $50).

Based on the eligibility requirements of the national organization, those students enrolled on campuses other than Pullman or in the online degree program are not eligible for membership in the Gamma Psi (Pullman) chapter. Membership is not limited to history majors.

Those who are already members of Phi Alpha Theta are warmly welcomed to participate in Gamma Psi chapter activities. Membership in Phi Alpha Theta is for life, so you need not join (or pay) a second time.

Applications for membership are solicited near the beginning of fall and spring semesters. Look for posters on the Phi Alpha Theta bulletin board in the third-floor corridor of Wilson-Short Hall. Announcements will also be made in various history classes by the instructors.

Phi Alpha Theta members are eligible to wear honor cords at commencement ceremonies (honor cords must be purchased).

Gamma Psi Chapter Activities

  • Election of officers (early in the fall semester)
  • Initiation of new members
  • Attendance and giving papers at the regional and national Phi Alpha Theta conferences
  • Organizing public lectures on history

Officers (2014–2015)

  • President: Allison Sellers
  • Vice President: Sarah Schraeder
  • Secretary-Treasurer: Brian Stack
  • Graduate Representative: Nyssa Runyan

More Information

If you want to know more about Phi Alpha Theta, contact Lauri Sue Torkelson or faculty advisor Joel Tishken (office: Wilson-Short 341), or see one of the officers listed above.

But what if you don't qualify for Phi Alpha Theta? Or what do you do if you qualify and want something more informal, more enjoyable, more social? Well, step this way, do we have something for you!

Introducing the History Club, a social organization that specializes in events and activities with a historical (no matter how far-fetched) theme. It's the next best thing to the History Channel! Go on, check it out. It's only a click away!

What's Happening

See the Phi Alpha Theta bulletin board on the third floor of Wilson-Short Hall for a current schedule of activities. The board is in the main corridor, just to the right of the history department office.








Department of History, PO Box 644030, Washington State University, Pullman, WA 99164-4030
301 Wilson-Short Hall, Pullman Campus • 509-335-5139 • Fax 509-335-4171 • Contact Us