This is the time of the academic year when students, faculty, and even staff (and deservedly so) get recognized.
Soon there will be additional highlights in the form of college graduations.
Yesterday, I was at the UMass Amherst Campus Center to take part in a very special ceremony -- the induction/initiation of new members into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. Phi Kappa Phi is the oldest, largest, and most selective all-discipline honor society and membership is by invitation only to the top 7.5 percent of second-semester juniors, and the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students.
Also, as the letter stated, the University of Massachusett's most accomplished faculty are also invited.
You may have heard (and even be a member) of one or more college/university honor societies, which are more discipline-specific -- Phi Beta Kappa (liberal arts), Beta Gamma Sigma (business), Tau Beta Pi (engineering), and Sigma Xi (science).
Professor Don Katzner of Economics was the Master of Ceremonies and Dean Steven Goodwin pf the College of Natural Sciences gave a wonderful speech on what success means, emphasizing that it is the ride, and not the destination, that matters and noted the importance of having goals, striving towards them, and revising them.
The Dean of our great Commonwealth College, Professor Priscilla Clarkson, gave Professor Patty S. Freedson a Distinguished Service Award. Dr. Freedson has done fascinating work on the effects of being sedentary on health using sensors. She has been a President of numerous scientific societies in her field, even the Sports Medicine one. And, I am so grateful for this, one summer, my daughter, as a high school student, even got a chance to help with research in her kinesiology lab.
My colleague, Professor Steven Floyd, who is the Isenberg Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and I were the faculty from UMass that were inducted yesterday.
The high point was having each inducted student come up to the podium to be recognized and to say a few words about their major and their plans for next summer/year.
Our students are amazing -- with internships at Ernst & Young, further study being pursued at Humboldt University in Germany and Oxford University in England, many applying to medical school or to graduate school, and the majority conducting research on topics from neuroscience to pharmacology and civil engineering, on-site, or off--campus -- even at Mass General Hospital in Boston!
It was also wonderful to have several students from the Isenberg School of Management
Plus, the students of Phi Kappa Phi have been involved in different service projects to help the community,
I was so impressed!