MSJC Students Receive Recognition in Two-State Region

March 15, 2017

MSJC Honors Program & Students Receive Recognition in Two-State Region

A Mt. San Jacinto College honors student and the college’s honors program received regional recognition during a convention held recently by Phi Theta Kappa, the international honors society for two-year colleges.

Pictured (left to right) - Jennifer Borton (Faculty Advisor), Hope Graham (Executive Secretary), Maria Hernandez (Fellowship Officer), Janet Plata (Public Relations Officer), Jessica Rook (Member), Crystal Bryan (Faculty Advisor), Manisha Singh (Scholarship Officer), Michael Hogan (Leadership Officer), Michael Carrier (President), Stephanie Velona (Faculty Advisor)

MSJC student Hope Graham, of Temecula, was elected to serve as vice president of communications for Phi Theta Kappa’s Nevada/California region during the convention that was held March 10-12 in Burlingame, CA. The college’s Phi Theta Kappa chapter, called Beta Delta Omega, earned Five-star Chapter status. This is the highest level a chapter can attain and represents the chapter’s “progress from local, campus involvement to regional involvement to international involvement,” according to the Phi Theta Kappa web site. The chapter also earned first place in the prestigious Hallmark award for its Honors in Action project titled “Human Trafficking: Myth and Reality.”

This year, MSJC inducted 382 new members, the highest membership in the history of MSJC. To be eligible for PTK membership, MSJC students must achieve a grade point average of at least 3.5 for 12 or more degree applicable units. Phi Theta Kappa provides opportunities for the development of student service, leadership, scholarship, and fellowship through organized honors society activities including campus blood drives, leadership conferences, scholarly lectures, and food drives for local families in need.

Each Phi Theta Kappa region hosts an annual regional conventions. At the California/Nevada regional convention, chapters are recognized for completing Phi Theta Kappa activities and regional awards are given out, said Dr. Nick Reeves, co-advisor of the Beta Delta Omega chapter at MSJC.

The Beta Delta Omega chapter also earned first place in the Chapter Participation Award and third place in the Chapter Travel Award.

MSJC students attending the Phi Theta Kappa Regional Convention were:
Manisha Singh, Moreno Valley
Hope Graham, Temecula
Maria Hernandez, Perris
Janet Plata, San Jacinto
Michael Hogan, San Jacinto
Jessica Rook, Hemet
Michael Carrier, Hemet

MSJC faculty Advisors attending the Phi Theta Kappa Regional Convention were:
Jennifer Borton
Crystal Bryan
Stephanie Velona

About the MSJC Honors in Action report “Human Trafficking: Myth and Reality”
In an effort to separate fact from fiction, we armed ourselves with the knowledge to recognize human trafficking by researching the conditions that cause it to occur, including poverty, gender-based violence and a changing global economy that creates emigration “push” and “pull” factors. From there we created a 5-question survey to assess the common person’s understanding on the issue. The survey was distributed to three separate audiences, the first to active members at a Phi Theta Kappa Leadership Conference in Ontario, the second to active community members at the 2016 Susan G. Komen Race in Lake Elsinore, and the third to newly inducted members at the 2016 Induction Ceremony on our Menifee Valley campus. The results showed significant differences in the responses which indicate that people are divided on the issue. In response, our team invited the Riverside County Anti-Human Trafficking Force to confirm the statistics in a Q&A on campus, and later invited a sex trafficking survivor to tell her story to an audience of over 100 students. We are confident that every student left each event understanding more about trafficking than when they arrived. Through teamwork and collaboration we reached our goal of raising awareness in our community and were even fortunate enough to give back to victims through donations of clothing and toiletries. Having become acquainted with the signs of abuse we are confident that we can now recognize trafficking, should it ever invade a stranger or loved one in our lives.