Phi Beta Kappa sponsors activities designed to advance the study of liberal arts and sciences and the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences in higher education and in society at large. These two scholarships were established in honor of faculty members who exemplified Phi Beta Kappa's motto: "Love of learning is the guide of life". The scholarships seek to recognize and reward outstanding students in the liberal arts and sciences.
The Society invites its members, supporters and the community to donate to these scholarship funds to support outstanding arts and sciences students at Baylor University.
The Professor Phillip Johnson Phi Beta Kappa Endowed Scholarship was established in spring 2010. Phillip Johnson was a leading figure in Phi Beta Kappa at Baylor from the start of his teaching career in 1977. He served as vice-president and president of the Zeta chapter before taking up the secretary/treasurer position which he held for twenty-six years. On April 17, 2010, he attended and was honored by both the Zeta Chapter and the National Phi Beta Kappa Society at his final initiation banquet; the newly-elected members (graduating seniors and select juniors) of this most prestigious of honor societies shook Dr. Phillip Johnson's hand as they received their election certificates.
Dr. Johnson passed away on May 12, 2010. Throughout his career at Baylor University, Dr. Johnson was deeply dedicated to his teaching, his students and his discipline of Spanish and Latin American Literature; he was kind and gentle in his manner with colleagues and students--always supportive and wanting the best for each person with whom he worked. He leaves with us a legacy of excellence. It is with deep affection for Phil as his colleagues and friends, as well as our recognition of how much he gave to the University that we endeavor to continue his great work encouraging students in the liberal arts and sciences to strive for the highest excellence in their studies and lives. For more information about Dr. Johnson, click here.
This scholarship, the Cresson Scholarship, was established in honor of Dr. Bruce C. Cresson, Professor Emeritus of Religion, who was the founding director of University Scholars and founding director of Baylor's Phi Beta Kappa chapter. For several years, Dr. Cresson served as Baylor's Director of International Programs.