In 1950 Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity became the first Greek organization to develop a youth auxiliary group. Under the direction of Dr. Parlette L. Moore the Sigma Beta Club was founded. Brother Moore was concerned about our changing needs in our communities and recognized the important role that Sigma men could play in the lives of our youth.
The Sigma Beta Clubs’ four major principles of focus are on Culture, Athletics, Social and Educational needs. The Sigma Beta Club offers a unique opportunity to develop values, leadership skills and social/cultural awareness in our youth during their developmental years. Sigma Beta Club programs are geared to meet the needs of its members, but at the same time provide them with a well-rounded outlook that is needed to cope with today’s society. Phi Beta Sigma is confident that investing in our youth today will produce the effective leaders of tomorrow.
The genesis of the Miami Sigma Beta Club began in 1967 when Miami was experiencing their first wave of school desegregation. This was taking a serious toll on minority students, especially the Black male population in the schooldistrict
Brother Wilkes J. Kemp, Sr., a teacher of mathematics at Miami Northwestern Senior High School, was concerned about bridging the gap between segregation and desegregation for these students. He discussed his concerns with Brother S. Frank McKoy and wanted to start a support group for a a select group of students. Brother McKoy, being aware of the new component to the National Education Program called the Beta Club, suggested to Brother Kemp that they should use this structure for organizing a group of these young men. Rho Sigma Chapter approved the idea and in 1967, twenty five young men from Miami Northwestern Senior High School were the charter members if the first Beta Club in Florida.
For more than 38 years, Brother Kemp and Brother Earl Davis used their homes as the weekly meeting places for the Sigma Beta Club. The members were trained in Parliamentary Procedure which was used while conducting their own meetings. The officers of the club are responsible for planning club recreational and social activities. They are also responsible for community service projects that can be applied to their graduation requirements. Club members receive tutoring in language arts and mathematics, as well as counseling in personal and social development. They are inspired by the advisers to achieve high academic success while demanding that they strive for excellence in all aspect of their lives. The advisers commitment has been the impetus for sending hundreds of young men to college, whom otherwise may not have considered post-secondary education an option.