Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated® was founded on January 15, 1908, on the campus of Howard University in Washington, D.C., by a group of sixteen students led by Ethel Hedgeman Lyle. Forming a sorority broke barriers for African-American women in areas where they had little power or authority, due to a lack of opportunities for minorities and women in the early 20th century. Five years later (1913), lead incorporator Nellie Quander ensured Alpha Kappa Alpha’s perpetuity through incorporation in the District of Columbia.

Consisting of college-educated women of many diverse backgrounds from around the world, the sorority serves through a membership of more than 300,000 women in 1,012 chapters in the United States, the US Virgin Islands, the Bahamas, Germany, Liberia, South Korea, Japan, Canada, South Africa and the Middle East. Women may join through undergraduate chapters at a college or university or they may also join through a graduate chapter after acquiring an undergraduate or advanced college degree.

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