In the mid 1980's, several faculty members, graduate students and alumni at California State University, Los Angeles, Department of Nursing, recognized the need to establish a nursing honor society with the goal of becoming a Sigma Theta Tau Chapter. The impetus for organizing a nursing honor society was to set high professional standards and goals for nursing students, promote research and other creative endeavors, and provide a forum for members to become personally enriched and committed to the ideals of the nursing profession.
More specifically, during 1985, Dr. Winifred Utz, then Chair of Graduate Studies, was interested in exploring the possibility of establishing a Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau at CSULA and wrote for the information and an application for establishing a chapter. Dr. Utz invited four graduate students who were enthusiastic about getting a chapter started to join a steering committee. Dr. Marilyn Friedman invited four graduate student alumni to participate also.
The first meeting to plan a steering committee to organize and establish a nursing honor society was held on March 14, 1988. At the meeting, Dr. Jo Ann Johnson, CSULA Department of Nursing Chairperson, welcomed the group and expressed the Department's support for the formation of the honor society. The official name of Nursing Honor Society at California State University, Los Angeles was chosen by the steering committee until induction as a chapter of Sigma Theta Tau occurred.
On July 19, 1988, the steering committee received a letter of approval from Dr. Mary Elizabeth Shutler, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at CSULA indicating University support for the establishment of the nursing honor society.
The first general meeting and Induction Ceremony of the Nursing Honor Society at CSULA was held on November 5, 1988. In June 1989, a letter of intent to apply to become a chapter was sent to Sigma Theta Tau.
In January 1990, applications were requested from Sigma Theta Tau. The Board of the Honor Society worked diligently during the summer to compile the information needed to complete the application. In September 1990, the finalized application was sent to Sigma Theta Tau International for review.
Fall of 1991 brought excitement when the House of Delegates voted that the Nursing Honor Society had been selected to become a chapter!
On May 9, 1992, Billye Brown, Immediate Past President of Sigma Theta Tau International, chartered the NU MU Chapter and inducted CSULA undergraduate and graduate students and community members.