Pearl River receives Honors in Action grant

Pearl River Community College’s Beta Tau Gamma chapter of Phi Theta Kappa international honor society will receive an Honors in Action grant of $1,000 to enhance its 2020 Honors in Action project. 

Phi Theta Kappa and the Mellon Foundation teamed up to fund the 2020 Honors in Action grants. 

PRCC’s research project focuses partly on locating resources available to assist educators during the pandemic. 

Dr. Terri Ruckel, Dean of the Dr. William Lewis Honors Institute, and sophomore student Michelle Legg of Hattiesburg wrote the grant application. 

“We want this project to focus on the essential mental health needs for the faculty and staff of the college,” said Legg, 28, who is an English Education major. “COVID-19 has brought about big changes in how they connect with students and how their class meets up. We realize it has become one big bowl of stress for many of them.” 

According to Ruckel, the chapter is looking into the mental health effects of COVID-19 safety protocols on college personnel. 

“Beta Tau Gamma chapter is honored to have received one of these grants and will use the funds as part of an art therapy project for our faculty,” Ruckel said. 

This art therapy session, which would take place in the multi-purpose room at the Forrest County Campus, would take place at the end of the semester, right after the Thanksgiving holiday. A date and time has not been determined. 

Legg serves as the vice president for scholarships for the Beta Tau Gamma chapter. She sees this program as a teacher appreciation event and would like to have this list of resources available on the PRCC web site in the next five or six weeks. 

“Receiving this grant is not so much about winning awards, but more about giving back to and showing our faculty that we respect and care about them,” she said. 

Phi Theta Kappa’s home office praised PRCC for this project. 

“We so appreciate your willingness to go above and beyond with your Phi Theta Kappa engagement to apply for the grant and are proud of the work you do at your college and in your community with your participation in a robust Honors in Action project,” said Susan Edwards, Associate Vice President of Honors Programming and Undergraduate Research, Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. 

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