PRCC inducts members of Phi Theta Kappa international honor society

April 12, 2024

Twenty-three students were welcomed into Pearl River Community College’s Beta Tau Gamma chapter of Phi Theta Kappa international honor society on April 8.

Twenty-three students were welcomed into PRCC’s Beta Tau Gamma chapter of Phi Theta Kappa on April 8.

The induction ceremony was held in the J. Cecil Burt Special Events Room at the Forrest County Campus with family members and other guests in the audience. 

Phi Theta Kappa is known as the foremost honor society for two-year colleges with over 1,300 chapters worldwide.

Students elected for membership are considered academically successful having completed at least 12 credit hours of non-remedial courses with a minimum cumulative 3.4 GPA.  

Scholarship, Leadership, Service, and Fellowship are the four hallmarks of PTK. The current officers briefly shared how those hallmarks have played out for them as members of PTK. 

Officers in the Beta Tau Gamma chapter include: Abbilyn Jones, President; Reagan Anderson, Vice President of Chapter Engagement; Richard Bullock, Vice President of Alumni; Carlo Catlett, Vice President of Leadership; Abbey Ford, Vice President of Service; Laura Meyerholtz, Vice President of College Completion/Transfer Readiness; Emily Smith, Vice President of Recruitment; Sydney Smith, Vice President of Scholarship; and Kaeden Thigpen, Vice President of Fellowship.

Before the students took the PTK oath, Dr. Ryan Ruckel, Dean of the William Lewis Honors Institute and Phi Theta Kappa Regional Coordinator, spoke to the importance of membership in Phi Theta Kappa.

“We at PRCC are your college,” he said. “This membership is a great way to move forward with your education.”

Dr. James Collum, Dean of Career and Technical Education and a Beta Tau Gamma advisor, echoed those same sentiments.

“You are now members of one of the more prestigious chapters in Phi Theta Kappa,” Dr. Collum said. “What you are going to achieve would not be possible without the help of your teachers at PRCC. You have shown the ability to have pride in what you’re doing.’’

Guest speaker for the event was Dr. Phyllis Chambers-Berry, Chief Nursing Executive for Forrest Health. She shared how important it is to consider what the next steps will be with an eye on the relationships you will build.

Special guest speaker was Dr. Phyllis Chambers-Berry, Chief Nursing Executive for Forrest Health.

“I am a witness to achieving your goal through organizations like Phi Theta Kappa,” said Dr. Berry. “This is not just a one stop for you. I encourage you to continue your pursuits as you move toward the next steps in your journeys. Then when it is time, tell your story to everyone.”

Dr. Doug Donohue, Associate Dean of the William Lewis Honors Institute and a Beta Tau Gamma Advisor, gave a special greeting and PRCC music instructor Dr. Rudy Gatlin provided special music. 

Beta Tau Gamma advisors include Dr. David Collum, Dr. Donohue, Dr. Ruckel, Dr. Terri Ruckel and Said Otwane. 

PRCC students inducted into Phi Theta Kappa Beta Tau Gamma chapter for 2024 spring semester are:

Dulse ‘Melissa’ Alvarado of Hattiesburg, Sophia Amaya of Hattiesburg, Kaylee Anderson of Waynesboro, Karsyn Brown of Hattiesburg, Gabrielle Cox of Hattiesburg, Bailey Expose of Columbia, Makala Herberger of Purvis, Kaleb ‘Ash’ Kinkopf of Petal, Summer Oatis of Sumrall, William Phelps of Hattiesburg, Summer Powers of Sumrall, Anthony Pugh of Petal.

Isabella Rainey of Hattiesburg, Skylar Reed of Greenville, Jackson Rigney of Petal, Cayden Robertson of Petal, Nayana Scott of Petal, Jasmine Smith of Hattiesburg, Kaycee Tanner of Lucedale, Amahri Vanish of Hattiesburg, Faith Wakefield of Carnes, Magdalynn Williams of Monticello and Cameron Wooten of Hattiesburg.  

According to Dr. Donohue, the total number of new Beta Tau Gamma members so far this semester is 115.

For the latest news on Pearl River Community College, visit and follow us on Twitter (@PRCC_Wildcats), Instagram (PRCCWILDCATS), Facebook (@PRCCMKTG), and TikTok (@prcc_wildcats).

Article by Chuck Abadie. Photography by Kaitlyn Jones.

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