Tuesday, Sep. 26, 2006
Phi Alpha Theta, the history honor society, recently announced winners of its national Best Chapter Award. Utah State University’s Delta-Xi chapter was awarded an Honorable Mention Award for Division V.
“It is apparent that the Delta-Xi chapter is thriving,” said Graydon A. (Jack) Tunstall, Phi Alpha Theta executive director in a letter of congratulations. “We at Phi Alpha Theta are extremely pleased with the dedication shown by you and your members to the organization and to Utah State University.
Based in the Department of History, USU’s chapter is advised by faculty member Tim Wolters, and includes approximately 40 members. An induction ceremony in November will see additional members admitted. For admission, undergraduates must rank in the upper 35 percent of their class, must have had at least 12 semester hours in history (four courses) with a grade point average of at least 3.1 in history and a 3.0 or better overall, and must have completed at least three semesters. Graduate students are also eligible for the honor society.
Phi Alpha Theta was founded at the University of Arkansas in 1921 and there are now 840 active chapters with a total membership of 280,000. The organization was established to recognize and encourage excellence in the study of history.
A variety of activities held last year contributed to USU’s award. The chapter held an opening social that included a tour of the Bear River massacre site, followed by a picnic. More than 50 people attended. The chapter also sponsored a graduate school panel, where professors and graduate students presented tips on how to apply to law and graduate schools. Another activity, “Fright Night,” annually held near Halloween, featured a talk by USU history professor Colleen O’Neil that highlighted Native American “ghost” stories.
Additional gatherings include historical games — imagine Roman senators taking over the world — and the biennial Phi Alpha Theta conference in Philadelphia, where five USU students attended and three presented papers. USU’s Delta Xi chapter holds two induction ceremonies each year, admitting approximately 12 new members.
“It is a pleasure to work with the students who make up Phi Alpha Theta at USU,” Wolters said. “Nancy Thatcher did a great job putting together the package we submitted, resulting in the Honorable Mention Best Chapter award for Delta Xi.”
An opening social for the chapter is Friday, Sept. 29, in Old Main 206 from 7-9 p.m. Refreshments will be served and all interested students are invited. Wednesday, Oct. 3, features a lecture by history professor Sue Shapiro. She will discuss the famous Roman poet Catullus in her presentation from 2:30-4 p.m. in Family Life 301. The fall induction ceremony will be the first week of November (date and location to be determined).
Writer: Patrick Williams, (435) 797-1354, firstname.lastname@example.org