Desoto County News

Northwest DeSoto Phi Theta Kappa chapter Named a Top 10 Distinguished Chapter

Photo: Northwest DeSoto Phi Theta Kappa Alpha Gamma Chi chapter at their Spring 2023 Induction. (Photo by Alyssa Pirani)

The Northwest Mississippi Community College DeSoto campus Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapter Alpha Gamma Chi has been distinguished as a Top 10 Chapter in the Mississippi/Louisiana Region. The honor was announced at the Regional Awards Gala at Mississippi State University (MSU) in March.

This has been due to great strides from the Northwest PTK team, who have brought the campus chapters from one-star rated PTK chapters in 2019-2020 to four stars in 2020-2021. In 2021-2022, the PTK DeSoto chapter was recognized as the “Most Improved” chapter.

Per requirements for being a five-star chapter, the PTK Alpha Gamma Chi chapter was required to participate in group research projects. This past year’s theme was ‘Art and Science of Play.’

“Our chosen theme was ‘Nostalgia as Play,'” said Denise Willis, district director of Business Instruction, Honors Institute director, and PTK advisor. “For the previous year the overall topic was ‘To the Seventh Generation: Inheritance and Legacy.’ Our theme was ‘Perceptions of Progress.’ For both years we won the award for the best in the theme.”

Willis said the short description of these projects is that there’s a group research project that results in some sort of “action.” They are initially given seven themes to choose from.

Because of these accomplishments, for two years PTK Alpha Gamma Chi chapter has received a $1,000 grant from PTK and the Mellon Foundation to help them with their projects, which has allowed them to start a final exam break room that will be popping up for the fourth time this spring at the DeSoto campus. This also allowed them to have a gaming “pop-up” as Willis described it, where students could play a Nintendo Switch in the lobby as they came and went. That allowed for a popular place for students to hang around and socialize.

Phi Theta Kappa is a national community college honor society for students achieving a 3.5 cumulative GPA after completing 12 hours of coursework toward their associate or bachelor’s degree. These students have access to transfer scholarships and networking opportunities.

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