Few people in the life of this university community, the oldest state-chartered university in America, could rival Dean William Tate in his love for his alma mater and his understanding of students. With competence and integrity, Dean Tate dedicated his life to students and their needs. His keen mind and scholarly pursuits enabled Tate to understand the widely differing aspirations of each student, and the varying backgrounds from which they came. Dean Tate's compassion and selfless love compelled him to give to the University of Georgia fifty years of significant contributions. His foremost contribution was motivating young college students and providing guidance for their futures.
Tate Society strives to serve as a memorial to this legendary leader and to spread both the reality and lore of the great Georgian by annually recognizing twelve men and twelve women of the first year class who best exemplify the qualities that Dean Tate possessed. More specifically, selection is based upon academic achievement and extracurricular involvement (scholarship, leadership, and service). Current Tate Society members are involved in every facet of campus life, and accepted applicants are expected to continue their contributions to the University throughout their tenure at UGA. To be considered for membership, applicants must be full-time students in their first year at the University, having completed one semester at the time of consideration.
Membership to the Dean William Tate Honor Society is considered a four-year commitment. In addition to member selection in the spring, Tate Society participates in an annual service project. The spring philanthropy is planned by Tate's newest members and is intended to serve the Athens community.