Eight Mesalands Community College were inducted Tuesday into the college’s Beta Eta Omega chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa, an honor society for community college students.
The induction was a ceremony complete with speeches, candles, white roses and a pledge to uphold the society’s values and to assist each other. The society’s advisors, faculty members Phillip Kaatz and Forrest Kaatz, conducted the ceremony.
Axel Hungerbuehler, Ph.D., director of Mesalands’ Dinosaur Museum told the inductees that membership goes beyond the yellow band members can wear at graduation and increased availability of scholarships.
“It’s a demonstration to the public that you have achieved something,” he said.
The other great value, he said, comes from opportunities to network.
“You develop contacts and connections that are useful to your future,” he said.
He also told them, however, that membership in the society is “only as good as you can make it,” and suggested the new members get active in the organization.
“Research what you can do to be a good member of the society.
To qualify for Phi Theta Kappa, students have to maintain a 3.5 grade-point average after 12 credit-hours and be asked to join the club by existing members, according to Thomas Newsom, Mesalands’ president.
Newsom said members of the honor society are eligible to participate on the state academic team, which brings scholarships and recognition before the New Mexico State Legislature.
In his second year as Mesalands’ president, he said, “I realize how important (Phi Theta Kappa) is to community colleges in New Mexico.”
The eight students inducted were Trae Jelinek, Wind Energy; Daniel Garcia, Wind Energy; Shane Ferreira, Wind Energy; Daniel Seitzler, Farrier Science; Nona Collins, Social Work; Rebeca Cordova, Education; Nicaela Padilla, Pre-Medicine; and Sydney Abernathy, Pre-Nursing.