Between the Junior Beta (grades 4-8) and Senior Beta (grades 9-12), the organization has helped nearly seven million students learn how to make a life for themselves—and, since 1991, it has awarded over $6 million in scholarships.
There are now more than 445,000 active members and more than 9,600 clubs nationally and internationally. It has become the nation's largest independent, non-profit, educational youth organization.
Although there are some universal requirements, each club has its own criteria for selection. Junior Beta is divided into two divisions: Elementary includes grades 4-5 and Junior includes grades 6-8. Senior Beta includes grades 9-12. Regardless of division, though, members adhere to the Beta mission and learn to embrace and embody its four pillars.
Beta’s mission originated with Dr. John W. Harris, a professor at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, who founded the organization in 1934. Over 80 years have passed, but his vision and Beta’s mission has remained the same. And most everyone who has been fortunate enough to be called a member has embraced those ideals and applied them to their own lives. From U.S. President Bill Clinton to current professional basketball player Kevin Durant, Beta members continue to lead long after their high school days are behind them.