Welcome to the first Honor Society News of 2016!
As the nation celebrates the accomplishments of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and his focus on service, it is fitting that the National Honor Societies have so many awards and programs that offer members, advisers, and chapters an opportunity to be recognized for their service achievements. We begin this edition by highlighting various award program deadlines.
NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
NHS and NJHS Award and Scholarship Programs
Several deadlines are coming up for various NHS and NJHS award programs. Mark your calendar now with these important dates.
- The NJHS Outstanding Achievement Award. To help middle level students jump-start their quest toward higher education, NJHS has established the annual NJHS Outstanding Achievement Award. The award will recognize 500 exceptional NJHS members with $500. It will be placed in a college savings account, to be program-managed by Oppenheimer Funds (OFI Private Investments) as part of the New Mexico Education Trust Board’s 529 college savings plan—The Education Plan. The nomination deadline is February 19.
- The NHS Scholarship Program. Remember, this year there is no limit on the number of applicants from your chapter for this program. There will be 300 national semifinalists this year, 100 more than last year. A total of $500,000 is being awarded. The student application deadline is February 16 and the adviser and principal recommendation deadline is February 24.
- The NHS and NJHS Outstanding Service Project (OSP) Awards. What creative service project has your chapter done in the past year that has significantly contributed to the local, national, or global community? Five NHS and five NJHS chapters will be recognized with this award. The application deadline is January 25 at 5:00 p.m. (ET).
- The NHS and NJHS Edward Rynearson National Adviser of the Year Award. This award honors the important work of NHS founder Edward Rynearson. Any current NHS or NJHS adviser who has served for three years or more may apply. New this year: There will be a winner for both NHS and NJHS! The nomination deadline is February 16.
NHS Debuts Scholarship Search Tool
To streamline the scholarship search process for NHS members, NHS Scholar Dollars, a scholarship search tool powered by College Board, has been launched in partnership with the Get Schooled Foundation. This tool will allow members to more efficiently explore scholarship opportunities. When linking to the search engine, members can filter results based on the four pillars of NHS—scholarship, service, leadership, and character—allowing the student to focus on programs that best match his or her attributes. Encourage members to take a test drive at www.nhs.us/scholardollars.
Answers to Questions About Paying for College
Help members and their parents curb their anxiety about college costs by urging them to participate in the next NHS and NJHS college admission planning webinar on February 17 at 7:00 p.m. (ET). “Understanding Financial Aid” will include a College Board representative and two university financial aid representatives. Visit the NHS and NJHS websites to register. (Members will need you to provide your school’s affiliation number in order for them to register.) For those short on time, quick answers will also be available beginning at 7:30 p.m. (ET) through a Twitter Town Hall (#Prep4College) featuring panelists as well as representatives from the Office of Federal Student Aid.
Deadlines Approaching for LEAD Chicago
Registration is at capacity for the LEAD Conference in Washington, D.C., but it’s not too late to register for LEAD Chicago! The registration deadline is January 29. Student attendees for both LEAD D.C. and LEAD Chicago also still have the chance to take the stage for a LEADx presentation, fashioned on the popular TED and TEDx Talks. The deadline to apply as a presenter is January 27 for LEAD D.C. and February 9 for LEAD Chicago.
NHS and NJHS recently created an Instagram account! Now, your chapter and members can follow the NHS and NJHS feed and share photos using this popular social media platform. Encourage your members to follow @nhs_njhs on Instagram, especially during the LEAD Conferences and National Student Leadership Week.
The Results Are In
There were so many great entries in October, it took our judges some time to determine the winners of the annual National Principals Month video contest. We are pleased to share the four winning videos with you, which came from Henry Hudson Regional School in New Jersey, Gunston Middle School in Virginia, Burlington County Institute of Technology in New Jersey, and Scott County Central High School in Missouri. Congratulations to the winners!
PROJECT OF THE MONTH
The Dating Game
With Valentine’s Day around the corner, this may be one way your chapter can raise money for itself or a charity. The Seminole High School NHS chapter in Sanford, FL, organizes and sells tickets to its own “Dating Game” based on the TV show. Three bachelors and three bachelorettes question hidden contestants. NHS officers prepare questions and choose the contestants. The show is unrehearsed, adding to the comic value. The audience votes by applause to indicate who should be selected to form the new couple. Audience members pay $3 per ticket to attend this annual event, which allows for a fun and easy fundraiser as it draws big crowds each year.
Looking for a project idea? Check out the National Student Project Database. After your search, take a moment to help fellow chapters by uploading your favorite project details (and photos, if you have them) through the NHS or NJHS websites. The database now offers more than 3,800 projects!
CHAPTERS DOING GREAT THINGS
The NJHS chapter at Shue-Medill Middle School in Newark, DE, organized a toiletries drive for the Caribbean island of Dominica, which was devastated by Tropical Storm Erika in August. Residents lost homes, cars, food, and personal items. The Shue community collected more than 300 items, and the homeroom with the most donations received a pizza party sponsored by NJHS. The donations were given to the Dominica-American Relief and Development Association and shipped to the residents of Dominica.
In Troy, MO, the NHS chapter at Troy Buchanan High School has adopted a two-mile stretch of highway near their school as one of their chapter service projects. The chapter participates four times a year through Missouri’s Adopt-A-Highway program. Each member is expected to participate in two of the four clean-ups. The chapter also sponsors a campuswide clean-up day. They divide the campus into eight sections with a crew chief for each section, giving students a chance to move into a leadership role.
Please share your accomplishments with us by emailing email@example.com, subject line: CDGT. Be sure to include project dates with your summary. We also encourage you to enter your projects into the National Student Project Database.
HONOR SOCIETY TIPS AND TOOLS
Preparing for Spring Officer Elections
While many chapters don’t hold elections until the end of the academic year, it’s not too early to begin planning. First, review your chapter bylaws to ensure they contain updated and member-approved election procedures, officer descriptions, and duties. Work with your current officers to draft updates and present them to the chapter for approval. If your bylaws are missing this important section, see the sample bylaws provided in the Adviser Resource Center. Next, prepare documents to share with members about your chapter’s election schedule and any qualifications needed to run for and hold office. Third, current officers should begin preparing their files to share with successors. Finally, plan for the transition. Schedule a meeting or retreat for outgoing officers to orient new officers to their duties and the general concepts of chapter management.
Check the Adviser Resource Center on the NHS and NJHS websites—and your NHS or NJHS National Handbook—for additional guidance.
Is there something you’d like us to include in next month’s Honor Society News? Email your ideas or suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the latest Advise:
Help your chapter spark new energy into its program. In “Beating the Winter Slump,” an adviser shares his tricks for propelling your members through the dead of winter. Energize yourself and your students with his timely ideas in the December/January issue.
Don’t forget, we welcome your insight too! Consider contributing an article for a future issue. Get submission and deadline information here.
Planning a spring induction ceremony? Need items for your graduating seniors? Through March 31, 2016, get 15% off all online orders from the NHS and NJHS online stores. When you checkout, use promo code 16IND on as many orders as you wish. Offer is not valid on phone, fax, or mail orders.
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