Beta Gamma Sigma (BGS) is an academic honor society founded in 1913 at the University of Wisconsin. Being the largest alumni group in the world for graduates of business programs, BGS has over 800,000 members, selected from over 540 collegiate chapters in business schools accredited by AACSB International.
The Mission of BGS is to encourage and honor academic achievement in the study of business, to cultivate and celebrate leadership and professional excellence, to advance the values of the Society, and to serve its lifelong members. The Society’s mission is supported by the following objectives:
- Encourage and honor academic achievement by students of business and management through chapters in business programs with AACSB accreditation;
- Develop BGS members as student and professional leaders, and celebrate continuing leadership and excellence;
- Foster in BGS members an enduring commitment to the founding principles and values of the Society: honor and integrity, the pursuit of wisdom, earnestness, and service;
- Connect Beta Gamma Sigma student and alumni members to each other and to opportunities in their professional lives.
The Chapter Honor Roll program awards active collegiate chapters, who engage their members and in turn, allow members to take advantage of all BGS has to offer. There are three levels of honors: Highest Honors, High Honors, and Honors.
Marshall’s Lewis College of Business has been a member of BGS since 1999. In 2019, it obtained the Highest Honors category for its work in recruitment and achievement of 200 engagement points. At Marshall BGS members are among the top 7% of undergraduate juniors, 10% of undergraduate seniors and the top 20% of masters program students. These requirements are tougher than those set by the society.
Significance of Initials
Beta is the initial letter of the Greek word BEBAEOS, which signifies honor. Honor is personal integrity and excellence of character. It is an enduring quality found in all persons who deserve to lead others. All honorable persons conscientiously seek to recognize, to uphold, and to encourage that which is ethical and that which is just. Honor is a guiding star which encourages altruism, enlightened social responsibility, and service rather than selfishness.
Gamma is the initial letter of the Greek word GNOSIS, which means wisdom. Wisdom is knowledge tested by experience and tempered by discerning judgment. It abhors prejudice, it insists upon freedom of thought and expression. Persons of wisdom constantly seek a better comprehension and more fruitful application of what is known. They are also endlessly engaged in a quest for an understanding of what is unknown. Confronted by a veritable flood of facts and concepts, the person of wisdom exercises special discrimination to select, to arrange, to relate, to interpret, and to apply. This is a challenge worthy of the finest mind.
Sigma is the initial letter of the Greek word SPOUDE, which means earnestness. Earnestness is enthusiasm measured by achievement, disciplined by reason and ennobled by sincerity. It is that dynamic quality which is essential for all great achievement. Without Earnestness, both Honor and Wisdom lose much of their potential effectiveness. The greatest personal achievements are tributes to the blending of honor, wisdom and earnestness in the minds and hearts of those who lead. Rewards for the individual and progress for society surely proceed from this wholesome union of qualities.