History of Sigma Alpha Iota

Sigma Alpha Iota, International Music Fraternity, was organized in 1903 “to form chapters of music students and musicians who shall by their influence and their musical interest uphold the highest ideals of a music education; to raise the standard of productive musical work among the women students of colleges, conservatories, and universities.”

SAI is a Greek fraternity for women. It is an organization whose purposes are to foster interest in music and to promote social contact among persons sharing an interest in music. SAI organizes its group life specifically to promote competence and achievement with music. SAI changed from a “sorority” to a “fraternity” in 1926. Fraternity comes from the Latin noun, fraternitas, which refers to both men and women. While SAI only allows women as members, it is a fraternity because it is based upon a single academic discipline. It has been used by all music fraternities for years.  As of August 2007, there were 107,902 initiated members worldwide, 212 active college cahpters, 120 active alumnae chapters, and one international chapter.

Vita Brevis, Ars Longa
Life is short, but art is long

SAI was founded on June 12, 1903 at the University School of Music in Ann Arbor, MI. The seven founding sisters were: Elizabeth Campbell, Frances Caspari, Georgina Potts, Leila Farlin Laughlin, Mary Storrs Andersen, Minnie Davis Sherrill, and Nora Crane Hunt. The seven founders “solemnly pledged themselves to help each other with sisterly affection, stand for the highest possible musical scholarship, for nobility and uprightness of character, and for the maintenance of friendly and unselfish relations among women in the musical profession.



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