Students help establish new honors society

Hannah Kinstle, Staff Reporter

Seniors Jordan Snow and Ally Cefalu recently joined together to create a national English Honor Society for students who excel in this area.

“I realized that every other subject had an academic excellence club, so I was thinking it was unfair for those who do well in English to not be recognized, so I decided to co-found it with my friend Ally, and we are just glad to have made the club and leave a legacy,” Snow said.

Snow and Cefalu are hoping that this group will encourage students to put their best efforts forward.

“I hope to spread a love for reading and literature and to encourage students to work hard in their English classes because they will be rewarded for it,” Cefalu said.

Having a place in an honor society motivates a lot of students to do well in their English classes because they know the benefits and how it looks on college applications.

“With life after graduation on the forefront of so many of the minds of our juniors and seniors, I think that any characteristic that sets you apart from the thousands of applicants that are joining you after high school is a phenomenal motivator,” society adviser Jenna Richardson said. “Gaining access to the desired universities is getting more and more difficult. It is not just enough to be a driven and dedicated student. You need to have many elements that separate you from a crowd.”

To be inducted, students must have taken an AP English course and earned either an A or B and have a 3.5 GPA or higher.

Snow and Cefalu have some ideas on how to promote a love for English and to use the society to help other students.

“We are planning to put (art) work on the first floor of the tower, like how the periodic table is on the math and chemistry halls. We are going to do maybe an open book and then do quotes from the curriculum from certain courses,” Snow said.

Snow also said the society members hope to provide tutoring for students in English.

If accepted as a member, there are many long-term benefits to participation.

“They will be able to put this on their college applications, and it will look really prestigious, and they will also have a better appreciation for literature, which is important going into college classes, especially learning about writers and history,” Cefalu said.

The honors society held its inaugural induction ceremony Jan. 11.

English department chair Geoff Belcher is pleased with the addition.

“I’m really appreciative of Ally and Jordan’s efforts. I enjoy teaching them both, and I was excited when they made their proposal this summer,” Belcher said. “It’s long past time that we also had an honor society.”

Richardson hopes the society will help students connect with like-minded peers.

“It is my belief that if I were a student who loved English, I would enjoy socializing and being around people of the same beliefs, rather than feeling like I am one of very few people that truly love English,” Richardson said.

Richardson also believes that creating this society will boost enrollment.

“I believe that having a group of students who love English literature and all of its components is a great method through which students can learn about the various opportunities of classes that exist within the English department,” Richardson said. “I think many of our electives that are offered are only targeted initially by students who like their core English classes, but having a group of students advocate on behalf of the English department in a society such as this one can reach a much broader audience.”