History

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Kappa Alpha Psi, a college Fraternity, now comprised of functioning Undergraduate and Alumni Chapters on major campuses and in cities throughout the country, is the crystallization of a dream. It is the beautiful realization of a vision shared commonly by the late Revered Founders Elder Watson Diggs, “The Dreamer”; John Milton Lee ; Byron K. Armstrong; Guy Levis Grant; Ezra D. Alexander; Henry T. Asher; Marcus P. Blakemore; Paul W. Caine; Edward G. Irvin and George W. Edmonds. ​

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The story of Kappa Alpha Psi is to a large extent the story of black students everywhere, whether organized or not, who attended predominantly white colleges or universities in America prior to World War II. The accomplishments of these first Black students are all the more noteworthy because typically they worked their way through college. Their determination in the face of seemingly insurmountable social and economic odds is the source of inspiration to less than full privileged students at white institutions of higher learning throughout America. To understand this is to understand the birth of college fraternities among Blacks.

Black-sponsored Greek letter organizations might have well begun in 1903 with Alpha Kappa Nu.

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The Ten Illustrious Founders gave birth to a great concept: the idea that if we are going to be Brothers, let us be Brothers on the best terms that we know. If we are going to bind ourselves together let it be around something that is strong enough to hold us; if we are going to sing, let us sing about something that will have a lasting refrain; if we drink a toast, let it be of something beyond the trivial and the vulgar; let us exalt the theme of achievement. Reliance would be placed on upon high Christian ideals and the purpose of honorable achievement in every field of human endeavor. The Fraternity would seek to raise the sights of young black youths and stimulate them to accomplishments higher than might otherwise not be realized or even imagined.

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