Phi Eta Sigma was founded at the University of Illinois, as an honor society for freshman men on March 23, 1923. The University of Maryland Chapter of Phi Eta Sigma was established in 1940 as the 48th chapter in the United States and re-chartered in 1999. There are now over 250 chapters. Women were admitted to Phi Eta Sigma in 1974. Phi Eta Sigma was admitted to the Association of College Honor Societies in 1937.