Welcome to the club: National Honor Society brings in 39 new members

RANTOUL — A group of students walked around the halls of Rantoul Township High School on Thursday with their eyes covered.

It wasn’t a game of blind man’s bluff. It was a welcome to National Honor Society moment. And maybe a “trust-me moment.”

Thirty-nine new members were welcomed into the scholastic group, joining 14 seniors. The bulk of the new members are juniors.

The rite was supposed to have been a surprise, but someone spilled the beans, NHS adviser Stephanie Bishop said. The new members weren’t supposed to have known they were being welcomed into the group when fellow students called them out of class and put blindfolds over their eyes. They were to have been kept wondering.

To qualify for NHS this year, a student must have a grade point average of 4.33 out of 5.0. That’s not as stringent as in years past when a 4.75 GPA was required.

“We felt that was extremely high. Myself, (Principal Todd Wilson) and teacher Megan Anderson felt it would be more beneficial to lower it,” Bishop said.

About 85 students were eligible to apply for NHS membership, and 39 did so. The process included student interviews with teachers, and students had to create a list of their honors and AP classes plus their service acts. The applicants were also required to write a 500-word piece about their character.

Not all of the students were comfortable being blindfolded, but they accepted it.

“It’s ... kind of a trust thing — trust our current members to guide them throughout the school,” Bishop said. “It’s .. a fun thing to take our new members and bond with them.”

After the blindfolds came off, the students went on a scavenger hunt with a theme of the four pillars of National Honor Society.

Representing the “character” pillar, the theater teacher’s room was selected because “he creates all the characters and puts on the plays,” Bishop said.

For the “service” pillar, the location was School Resource Officer Kurtis Buckley’s office.

“Leadership” was represented by the administration offices, and the “scholarship” locale was the counseling center and the library, “just because that’s where we have our meetings every other Tuesday, there and my room,” Bishop said.

The students then returned to the school cafetorium for a celebration. They received a certificate of membership. All of the current members brought a snack or food and drink, and the chapter held an information meeting to talk about expectations, bylaws and guidelines.

The first NHS service event will revolve around the Thanksgiving holiday. The students will provide a Thanksgiving family for families in need. The chapter will begin gathering donations for any kind of Thanksgiving item.

The project involves the families coming to the school to pick up the food, including turkeys, hams and side dishes for the entire week.

New National Honor Society members are Josie Amerio, Elaine Barnett, Ocean Beard, Matthew Benton, Forrest Bricker, Carl Burts, Bailey Coleman, Hannah Combs, Alex Crawford, Adam Crites.

Also, Rachel Curtis, Sabrina Fullenkamp, Gillian Gawenda, Lyndsay Greenwood, Zachariah Guhl, Elijah Hall, Taylor Hannagan, Rachel Klimas, Emma Larson, Peter McCusker, Emma Mihaly, Lela Perry, Hanna Pieper.

Also, Joel Pilarski, Haley Reynolds, Preston Richardson, Nolan Roseman, Stefani Rutledge, Joe Schluter, McKenna Srandel, Joe Swiney, Isabelle Torres, Janet Vazquez, Yuleydi Vazquez, William Wake, Simon Walker, Jaedon Wankel, Hailey Wilson and Emmitt Yale.

Current members are Dynasty Brandon, Holley Brooks, Tiffany Coons, Johnathan Frerichs, Xin Ying “Sammie” Guo, Faith Johnson, Lindsay Jordahl, JawDayjha McClyde, Bailey Miller, Jared Motley, Devin Parker, Elena Shields, Seth Sprandel and Kaylie Wilson.

dhinton@rantoulpress.com

Categories (2):News, Education

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