Guidelines for Membership
Any student at the College who has worked on a scientific research project that has produced some sort of written document as its culmination is eligible. This can be a peer-reviewed article in a journal, a poster presented at a meeting, or an internal report or Powerpoint presentation (e.g., from summer research, from independent project during the school year, or from Honors research). We also interpret the membership rules to encompass articles/posters/abstracts that have been submitted for publication/presentation but haven't yet appeared/been delivered. Disciplines that are covered by Sigma Xi society are: mathematics, statistics, engineering, biology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, and certain subfields of psychology and linguistics. If you don't fit into any of these categories, but still feel you are eligible, please don't hesitate to contact any of the local chapter officials.
Membership perks: involvement in a high-profile international professional society for scientists, opportunities for networking on Facebook and LinkedIn, invitations to present research at annual meeting, subscription to American Scientist magazine. Graduating seniors who have been inducted (or submitted their paperwork prior to the end of exam week) get a "Sigma Xi" printed next to their names in the Commencement brochure. If you want to know about the other perks, they are detailed here.
How to become a member (you can do this at any time of the year):
1. Print and fill out the first page of the nomination form (pdf). Students are typically applying for "Associate" membership status. Indicate that you wish to be affiliated with the "Swarthmore College" Chapter (you can change that in the future when you graduate and want to be affiliated with a chapter closer to where you move to).
2. Ask two faculty members to complete/sign the Nominator sections of the form. Ideally, your faculty research mentor will be First Nominator; the person must be a Full Sigma Xi member. Second nominator can be any Sigma Xi member who has Full member status.
3. Staple your document (any of manuscript, abstract, Powerpoint slides, shrunken version of poster, etc., are acceptable) to the form.
4. Send or deliver to current Sigma Xi president (Rachel Merz, Department of Biology, Martin 125).
5. Attend one of the induction events that are sponsored by the Swarthmore College chapter of Sigma Xi. These events often include a dinner (where the society's Oath is administered) and a talk by an invited speaker. There are between 3 and 5 induction events each academic year.
6. At these induction events, pick up your official member plaque. If your plaque has not arrived by the time of the event, the Sigma Xi administrative assistant will mail it to you when it comes.
7. Sign the Sigma Xi log book. This book has signatures of all the Swarthmore College chapter members since the founding of the chapter in the 1920s.
NOTE: The above instructions are tailored to students. If you are a faculty or staff on campus and wish to become a member, please follow the instructions on the 2nd page of the form.