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Divine Nine Plaza — A Place to Call Home
Jodi Bouyack
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PLAZA HONORS DIVINE LEGACY: 2019 KU National Pan-Hellenic Council Executive Board members (L to R) Jessica Thompson, Gabriella Ocadiz, Carolina Barnes, Kendrick Jackson and Carla Lutcher are proud to see the vision for the Divine Nine Plaza realized.

A special dedication ceremony took place during Homecoming Week last fall honoring the rich histories of KU’s black Greek-letter organizations. The Divine Nine Plaza, located in the Burge Union courtyard, features stone monuments of the nine historically black Greek-letter organizations in the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC). Each of the sororities and fraternities are represented by a pedestal that includes the year each was chartered at KU and the organization’s crest. A historical marker telling the story of the NPHC is included.

A group of students who advocated for the plaza started an online campaign in 2018 through KU Endowment’s crowdfunding platform, LaunchKU, to fund the project. The effort raised more than $54,000 from 208 donors.

“I was inspired to get involved to honor the rich history of the Divine Nine at KU, and I felt it was a great way to give the entire student body an opportunity to learn about our organizations and what we bring to campus,” said Taylor Pullen, president, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

At one point in time, there was full representation of the Divine Nine at KU. Presently, five organizations have active chapters: Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Four of the chapters were chartered at KU before 1926. The new plaza offers members a permanent home for the organizations to celebrate traditions as well as bring the NPHC organizations together.

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