Salamander Honorary Society

Gamma Chapter

Salamander Honorary Fire Protection Engineering Society was founded in 1923 at the Armour Institute of Technology (now Illinois Institute of Technology) in Chicago. The purpose of the society is to promote high scholarship and original investigation in all branches of fire protection engineering.

The Gamma Chapter of Salamander was chartered at WPI in 1984, at which time investiture ceremonies were held for the first group of graduate students.

Through the years, more than 700 fire protection engineers have been initiated into the society. Selection for membership is a high honor in the fire protection engineering community.


Academic excellence and leadership characteristics form the basis for election to the Society. Students meeting qualification criteria are identified as possible candidates by the WPI faculty. Active student members vote to elect qualified candidates into the Society. Honorary members may also be elected to Salamander by a vote of all active and alumni members of all chapters.

About the Salamander

The mythical salamander, born of fire, imbued with fire, takes its place in the honorary society emblem to remind us that fire is not only the destroyer, but also the comforter and the servant of civilization. This legendary figure also symbolizes the belief that our most compelling duties and routine services are not performed altogether in terms of rigid and lifeless formulas.

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Additional Information:

Current Officers:

  • President: Joel Edwards Sipe
  • Faculty Advisor: Professor Nicholas Dembsey