ASCC PTK inducts new members
The American Samoa Community College (ASCC) chapter of the prestigious Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Honors Society has inducted eight new members for the spring 2013 semester. With chapters at community and junior colleges across the United States and its territories,
Phi Theta Kappa recognizes and encourages excellence in scholarship among associate degree students. The Greek words Phi Theta Kappa mean wisdom (Phi), aspiration (Theta) and purity (Kappa). The society bases its programs on its four hallmarks: scholarship, leadership, service and fellowship.
The PTK welcomed its new members into its ranks during this semester’s induction ceremony held this past Friday, March 8th, with the theme “Good as Gold”, inspired by the Robert Frost poem “The Road Less Traveled.” The ceremony featured as special guest speaker Dr. Oreta Mapu Crichton, who has enjoyed a long and distinguished career locally in the fields of education and social service, and now serves as a Senior Policy Advisor for the American Samoa Government.
Dr. Crichton began her talk by referencing the aforementioned Frost poem, and how it expresses the struggle with doubt that comes with making hard choices.
“Remember,” she advised the audience, “that the wisdom of the world is most valuable when it bows to the wisdom of God.” Dr. Crichton went on to share her experiences as a young Samoan growing up in the state of Louisiana during the years leading up to the Civil Rights Movement. As the only “person of color” in her high school, her faith was continually tested, and not only got her through very hard times of feeling alienated, but also gave her the courage to befriend the first African-American student to attend her high school after federal law required that it become integrated.
Following Dr. Crichton’s speech, PTK inductees Angela Amata, Seonghee Hong, Ulysses Hopkinson, Yeseul Kang, Salani Leota, Zarahemla Mamea, Nyrese Pato and Sharma Sapolu performed the ritual of lighting candles to symbolize the flame of knowledge and took the oath of allegiance to the PTK. The evening also featured a musical performance by PTK alumni Ms. Tonya Tuigamala and closing remarks from PTK advisor Evile Feleti.
Each semester, PTK Head Advisor Toaiva Fiame-Tago works with fellow advisors Feleti, Anthony Felise, Kuki Tuiasosopo, Evelyn Fuean and Athena Mauga to review the ASCC Dean’s List and other relevant data to determine which students qualify for the membership in the Society.
At ASCC, PTK nominees must have taken at least 12 credits, passed their English 150, English 151 and Math 90 classes, and have earned a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Qualifying students receive an invitation to join PTK, and most of those invited readily accept the offer. During last week’s ceremony, PTK President Marietta Lafaele also paid tribute to the late Jim Sutherland, a longtime advisor who helped establish the Society at ASCC. “For all future inductions, Jim’s name will be included on the program as an Emeritus advisor,” said Lafaele.
Besides Lafaele, other members this semester include Temo Ledua, Vice President, Logistics; Tofagaoalii La’a, Vice President, Public Relations; Mona Chang, Secretary; Grace Felise, Treasurer; Siu Niupulusu, PR Secretary; Easther Kim, Hine Pei, Tuulalo Farani, Scott Manning, Peniamina Tai'i, Fa'afetai Ifopo, Moya Bejer, Krystal Kupa, Wittenberg Mariner, Pearl Sheck, Mary Cheung Fuk, Fiaai Robert Moliga, Maria Magalasin, Randall Fitisone, Tae il Kim and Tala Ropeti.
Phi Theta Kappa provides more than $35 million worth of scholarships annually to students nationwide. Each member is automatically nominated for inclusion in the prestigious National Dean’s List, and is also enrolled in the PTK Transfer Database, which links senior institutions across the nation offering scholarships to PTK members.
For more information on the Phi Theta Kappa Honors society, visit their webpage at www.ptk.org.
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