d9 ribbon cutting image

On Saturday, during Homecoming Weekend, students, alumni, faculty, staff, and distinguished guests celebrated the opening of the Divine Nine Plaza, located on the experiential pathway behind the Smithgall Student Services Building. The ribbon-cutting ceremony, held in honor of historically Black fraternities and sororities, marked a new chapter in Georgia Tech’s history and an extraordinary opportunity to foster unity and celebrate the legacy of the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC), also known as the Divine Nine. 

“The timing of this celebration during Homecoming Weekend is the perfect backdrop for this event. It gives all Yellow Jackets, former and current, an opportunity to share in this day of pride and legacy,” said President Ángel Cabrera. “Days like this remind us that Tech thrives on diversity. We want Tech to be a place where every student can succeed and go on to do incredible things.” 

The history of the Divine Nine at Georgia Tech dates back to 1976, when the Delta Kappa chapter of the Omega Psi Phi fraternity obtained its charter. The Divine Nine Plaza, named for the nine historically Black Greek-letter organizations, not only stands as a tribute to the rich traditions and legacies of these organizations but also as a visible, tangible symbol of the invaluable contributions made by NPHC organizations to both the Institute and the larger community. 

collage of speaker images from the D9 ribbon cutting

The new plaza combines modern design and tradition. It features nine distinct plots, each dedicated to a specific NPHC organization, showcasing their respective emblems and values. An amphitheater at the heart of the plaza will serve as a site for events, performances, and gatherings, celebrating artistic expression and cultural appreciation. It also honors the university's commitment to diversity and inclusivity

“This space embodies the spirit of belonging; belonging not only to our Georgia Tech campus, but to a legacy that stretches across generations,” said Kim D. Harrington, interim associate vice president for Arts, Belonging, and Community, a division of Student Engagement and Well-Being. “It’s a place that radiates with meaning, impact, and emotional connection.”  

unveiling of the plaques at the D9 Ribbon Cutting Ceremony (collage of images)

Speakers included Cabrera and Harrington, as well as Shantay Bolton, executive vice president of Administration and Finance; Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens; Brian Blake, president of Georgia State University; Valerie Montgomery Rice, president of Morehouse School of Medicine; Cynthia Culbreath, president of Georgia Tech’s Black Alumni Organization; and Georgia Tech students representing NPHC.  

“The Divine Nine Plaza stands as a tangible commitment to recognizing and honoring the NPHC organizations that have enriched the tapestry of Georgia Tech for decades,” said Meredith Cofer, NPHC president. “The Divine Nine’s mission is grounded in principles of unity, service, leadership, and scholarship. Their dedication to civic engagement and academic achievement, along with their unwavering commitment to inclusivity and equity, exemplify the very best of what our community stands for.”  

collage of images from the D9 Grand Opening