By Ely Schosek
Each year a new group of Springville-Griffith Institute’s 8th graders is inducted into the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS), but not without much hard work on their part.
This year, there was a total of 31 inductees. The induction ceremony took place Thursday, Nov. 7 in the middle school cafeteria.
Students were selected for NJHS in 8th grade based on their academics throughout the past two years. An application was given to all students who qualified for the honor roll at the end of each quarter through both sixth and seventh grade.
The purpose of this application is to show that they have “One leadership quality, 10 community service hours, one student activity outside of school, one community activity outside of school, four character forms and two letters of recommendation stating that the inductee has positive leadership and character traits,” noted Mrs. Kim Ploetz, NJHS advisor.
In addition to the students and parents in attendance, there were also a number of faculty members present along with a special guest: Nick Sullivan, this year’s National Honor Society President. Nick spoke to the students, congratulating them on their accomplishments and their dedication that brought them to be sitting on the stage that night.
Ploetz commenced the ceremony by welcoming those in attendance and leading them in the Pledge of Allegiance. Following her opening remarks, Sullivan gave his congratulations to the students.
Succeeding those two short but meaningful speeches was the ceremonial Lighting of the Candles. Each candle represents a trait that each inductee has proved his or herself to possess: scholarship, service, leadership, citizenship and character. Each trait was elaborated upon by a middle school teacher who is also a member of the NJHS committee.
Middle School Principal Shanda DuClon and another NJHS committee member presented the membership certificates to the inductees. The inductees were called up one at a time and were escorted by a marshall. These marshalls were often parents, older siblings or grandparents. The students then walked onto the stage and waited there until all inductees were announced.
Parents were given an opportunity to take a photo of the group prior to dismissal from the stage. Friends and family were then invited to stay for cake and cookies in celebration of the accomplishments of these excellent students throughout their years in middle school.
Our chapter of NJHS has been welcoming new members since 2010. Each new member is received by stating the Inductee’s Pledge: “I pledge myself to uphold the highest purposes of the National Junior Honor Society to which I have been selected. I will be true to the principles for which it stands; I will be loyal to my school; and will maintain and encourage high standards of scholarship, service, leadership, citizenship, and character.”
SGI’s NJHS committee members are Sara Landers, Kelly Zifra, Lisa Ricci, Amanda Valenti, Mary Gaffney, Kathy Krzemien, Cristin Benz, Beth Lewandowski and Kim Ploetz.
The following people and groups were thanked: SGI Board of Education; Superintendent Kimberly Moritz; Principal Shanda DuClon; NJHS Faculty Council; SGI MS Custodial Staff; Middle School Student Council; NHS President Mr. Nick Sullivan; and parents and families for their support.
Autumn Andreeff, Ginger Andrews, Hannah Baumgartner, Jaden Bochenek, Gabrielle Cerasani, Cora Cudney, David Dawson, Tristan Hammer, Graeden Heichberger, Amelia Hintz-Strub, Arika Leatherbarrow, Anthony Maul, Arec Miller, Felicza Morganti, Linnea Neureuther, Mackenzie Offerbeck, Kelsey Perkins, MacKenzie Pierce, McKayla Ruhland, Hunter Runser, Alexia Shivens, Alivia Sipes, Lauren Smith, Hans Solly, Otto Spielberger, Noralee Sprague, Isaac Stewart, Sarah Sullivan, Sharon Thomas, Adam Trautman and Layla Winfield.