News

Chapter Update – November 2019

Nov 1, 2019

College of Charleston Summit of ScholarsCofC Creates Student Lecture Series

Chapter 184 at the College of Charleston in Charleston, South Carolina, partnered with the campus Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities program to host a student lecture series featuring seven students called the Summit of Scholars on Oct. 26.

The CofC chapter collaborated on the series in order to host an academically focused event for students beyond initiation. Creating a lecture series helped the chapter increase interest in Phi Kappa Phi, and partnering with the URCA provided more awareness of the chapter in the honors and academic community on campus.

TAMU Creates Partnership for Gathright and Dean’s Excellence Awards

Over the past two years, chapter 53 at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, has worked with the Association of Former Students and LAUNCH – a campus department that supports high-impact educational experiences for students – to create a more holistic process to identify and recognize top students on campus.

Texas AM University awardsDr. Jonathan Kotinek, director for honors at Texas A&M and treasurer for the school’s Phi Kappa Phi chapter, worked with representatives from the Association of Former Students, Student Affairs, LAUNCH and chapter officers to eliminate redundancies in campus student recognition by merging existing sophomore and junior award processes and creating a freshman award rather than senior since LAUNCH was already managing a top senior award. The merge also addressed a need to increase awareness of the Society’s prestige so that invited students are more likely to accept.

Up to two freshman and sophomore students in each college can be selected for recognition; the top student is recognized with the Gathright Dean’s Excellence Award and the second with the Dean’s Excellence Award. Up to two additional students in each classification in each college can be selected for honorable mention. Recognized students are invited to visit with Phi Kappa Phi officers and their college dean at a special breakfast each fall. The top junior in each college is selected by their dean as the Phi Kappa Phi Gathright Oustanding Junior, and then a University Outstanding Junior is selected from this group based on an interview process with chapter officers.

“We are excited to have completed our first round of recognizing the top freshman, sophomore and junior students at Texas A&M through the Gathright Award process. We look forward to strengthening the collaboration between Phi Kappa Phi, LAUNCH and The Association of Former Students moving forward. We also look forward to seeing what kind of impact this award has on Phi Kappa Phi membership in the coming years,” said Kotinek.

The list of 2019 Gathright Outstanding Juniors was announced last Spring. The 2019 cohort of freshman and sophomore Gathright and Dean’s Excellence Award winners were announced earlier this fall. To see the full list of freshman and sophomore recipients, click here.  

UNG Receives Blue and Gold AwardUniversity of North Georgia Service Award

Chapter 172 at the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, Georgia, received a Blue and Gold Award from the UNG Office of Student Involvement for Outstanding Service to the Campus/Community during the 2018-2019 academic year.

The Blue and Gold Awards began in 2017 to recognize outstanding student organizations and student leaders on campus. Submissions are reviewed by a panel of staff and students, and the winners are presented at the Blue and Gold Award event each April.

The UNG chapter received the award for their community service project that focused on increasing childhood literacy. The chapter partnered with the Woody Gap School, one of the smallest K-12 schools in the mountains of Georgia, to provide books that students wished for last year. Chapter officers and members drove to Suches, Georgia, to deliver books and meet the children at the school.

“Phi Kappa Phi executed the delivery of just over 50 books to the children at Woody Gap. Now, those children at Woody Gap School will have a memory as they approach the time in life for considering post-secondary education that is positive and welcoming when they think of UNG,” said Brenda Bishop, past president.

Share Your Chapter’s Events, Resources and Practices

Please share your chapter news and events with Michelle Lowery, chapter development director, to be included in future chapter updates and social media. Pictures are encouraged!


Top photo by Sarah Kell – The 2019 student lecturers for the Summit of Scholars gather at College of Charleston.

Middle photo by Royal Petrie – The 2019 Gathright Phi Kappa Phi Outstanding Juniors were honored at the Texas A&M University chapter’s induction ceremony. They are joined by chapter officers and Porter Garner III. Garner, president and CEO of the Texas A&M Association of Former Students, was the ceremony’s speaker and was honored with Society membership as an outstanding alumnus.

Bottom photo by Brittaney Dyer – Officers from the University of North Georgia chapter during the 2018-2019 Blue and Gold Awards Ceremony include, from left, Brittaney Dyer, student vice president; Brenda Bishop, past president; Charlotte Wade, president; and Danielle Hartsfield, secretary.