PRCC’s Iota Mu Chapter Graces Two Phi Theta Kappa Journals with Impactful Projects

January 25, 2024

Pearl River Community College’s Iota Mu Chapter achieved a remarkable milestone, securing a dual publication in two of Phi Theta Kappa’s esteemed journals. This recognition spotlights the chapter’s dedication to excellence and solidifies its standing as a beacon of scholarly achievement. The articles showcase their College and Honors in Action projects from the 2022 – 2023 school year. 

Phi Theta Kappa is known as the foremost honor society for two-year colleges with over 1,300 chapters worldwide. The Iota Mu Chapter covers students attending either the Hancock or Poplarville Campus. 

Iota Mu was recognized as a Five Star Chapter for undertaking College and Honors in Action projects, holding two inductions per year, and participating in local, regional, and national PTK programming. The chapter placed first in the Mississippi/Louisiana Region and third internationally with their combined scores for both projects. Nearly 1300 Chapters submitted projects internationally. 

“We are so proud of the work our chapter members put into these projects and thankful for the opportunities given to these students through Phi Theta Kappa,” said PTK Advisor and Instructor of Sociology Kira Arthurs. “It is really exciting that our students have projects published in not one but two academic journals as undergraduates! They were given the opportunity to grow as leaders as well as make an impact on the experience of classmates and community members alike.” 

FINAL EXAM STUDY WEEK  

“Final Exam Study Week” was published in Change Makers: Phi Theta Kappa Journal of Student Leadership. The journal spotlights initiatives undertaken by community college students collaborating with college administrators. These projects are designed to align with the mission of their colleges, fostering positive changes that resonate throughout their campus communities. Iota Mu is one of 18 PTK Chapters featured in the issue.  

For the project, they provided subject-specific tutoring in American history, psychology, intermediate algebra, and general biology. Sessions were held during the last week of classes for the fall semester of 2022. Study guides and tutors were made available for the 53 students who attended. The project supported the college’s mission of “providing quality educational and service opportunities for all who seek them.” 

“Playing a role in Iota Mu’s College Project was not only a pivotal moment but also a transformative role and experience for me,” said PTK Vice President of Service for the 2022-2023 school year Kristina Langley. “Test anxiety is a very real struggle college students face every semester, and our College Project aimed to take test anxiety to task at finals.  

“It was inspiring to see students taking advantage of what the event had to offer, knowing that they were seeking opportunities to succeed in their educations.” 

VIRTUAL REALITY IN NURSING HOMES 

“The Impact of Gaming and Virtual Reality in Nursing Homes” was published in Civic Scholar, a journal highlighting Honors in Action projects. The projects require researching an issue for the college campus or greater community and creating a project or event that meets a specific community need and leaves a lasting impact. Iota Mus was one of 17 Chapters featured 

Members of the chapter conducted research on why play is important as people enter their twilight years and how limited mobility restricts access to various forms of play. Their research looked at access to experiences like travel, bowling, fishing, and other forms of play for the elderly, especially for those living in nursing homes. The group elected to take virtual reality and other gaming systems into local nursing homes to let residents experience travel and play. 

Young man in vest and black pants stands while young woman sits. Both are wearing VR goggles

“Play is a vital part of life at all stages,” said PTK Vice President of Scholarship for the 2022-2023 school year Lauren-Anne Lagasse. “Bringing the VR headsets to nursing homes allowed the residents to have the opportunity to travel, play games, and for some, even reminisce on different parts of their lives through traveling via VR.  

“It was amazing to see the impact that the headsets had on the elders. While some were hesitant, most enjoyed the experience.” 

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

Article by Laura O’Neill. Photos provided by Iota Mu Chapter advisors.

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