Beta Beta Beta (TriBeta) is a society for students, particularly undergraduates, dedicated to improving the understanding and appreciation of biological study and extending boundaries of human knowledge through scientific research.
Beta Beta Beta Biological Honor Society seeks to encourage scholarly attainment in this field of learning by reserving its regular membership for those who achieve superior academic records and who indicate special aptitude for and major interest in the life sciences. It desires to cultivate intellectual interest in the natural sciences and to promote a better appreciation of the value of biological study, and thus welcomes into associate membership all those students who are interested in biology. Beta Beta Beta endeavors, also, to extend the boundaries of man’s knowledge of nature by encouraging new discoveries through scientific investigation and to this end encourages undergraduate students to begin research work and report their findings in the journal of the society, BIOS.
It emphasizes, therefore, a three-fold program: stimulation of scholarship; dissemination of scientific knowledge; and promotion of biological research.
TriBeta was founded in 1922 at Oklahoma City University — the Alpha Chapter — by Dr. Frank G. Brooks and a group of his students. The idea of an honor and professional society for biology students spread rapidly and by 1925, the society was a national organization. Biennial national conventions of student and faculty members began in that year and in 1930 the society journal, BIOS, began publication of student research, articles of interest to biologists and society news. As the society grew, it was divided into regional and district groups, each of which holds a convention annually. At the heart of every district and national meeting are student research papers presented in the style of graduate meetings. Awards are given for outstanding individual and chapter accomplishment.
Towson's chapter, Upsilon Eta, was founded in 1968.
The acorn, the bird, and the fish represent life on the ground, in the air, and in the water. The knight's helmet signifies that the scientist is always ready to apply his abilities for the benefit of mankind. The skull indicates that science, although greater than the life of any individual, depends upon the contributions of individual scholars. The two light quarters of the shield represent known truth; the dark quarters represent truth still unknown. The diagonal golden band symbolizes the light and truths of science. The serpent stands for wisdom. The colors of Beta Beta Beta are red and green: blood red for zoology and leaf green for botany. The flower is the red rose, symbol of beauty and strength. The motto is BLEPEIN BASIN BIOU which means "to see the foundation of life."
This is a common symbol of academic excellence. The first Beta stands for the Greek word BALANOS, which means acorn; it represents life in and on the ground. The second Beta stands for the Greek word BOUDETASE, which means little bird; it represents life in the air. The third BetaBOAX, which means fish; it represents life in the water. All three words may be summed up in the one word BIOS, which means life. Beta Beta Beta also represents TriBeta's three purposes: to promote scholarship in the biological sciences, to promote the dissemination of biological knowledge, and to encourage research. The coiled serpent in the center of the key is an ancient symbol of wisdom.