PRCC’s PTK Chapters Win Big at MSU Awards Gala

All Locations -Pearl River Community College’s Beta Tau Gamma Iota Mu chapters of Phi Theta Kappa participated recently at the 2019 Phi Theta Kappa Awards Gala held at Mississippi State University in Starkville where chapter and individual awards were presented.

Beta Tau Gamma, located at PRCC’s Forrest County Center, came home with the following awards:

*Distinguished College Administrator: Dr. Jana Jenkins Causey, who serves as Vice President for Forrest County Operations.

“I am honored that our Phi Theta Kappa students and advisors nominated me for this award,” said Dr. Causey.  “I am thankful every day to have the opportunity to serve such great people who value service to our communities and are committed to changing the lives of our students.  Phi Theta Kappa is an awesome organization committed to these endeavors and I greatly appreciate them for recognizing me”

*Continued Excellence Advisor:  Instructor Dr. Ryan Ruckel, who serves as a Beta Tau Gamma advisor.

*Most Distinguished Chapter in the MS/LA Region: According to Dr. Terri Smith Ruckel, a Beta Tau Gamma advisor, this award means that PRCC’s chapter had the highest score for its Honors in Action and College Project.

“This is huge for our chapter,” said Dr. Terri Ruckel. “This means that our chapter had the highest score for our Honors in Action and college projects in Mississippi and Louisiana. Our chapter is only eight years old, so this is big news. This means our chapter has a good chance of being in the top 10 chapters internationally.

“This also means we are the cream of the crop. We have good teamwork and we had strong engagement. We have an excellent program. These students are hungry to make things better for us on our campus and in the community.”

*2nd Distinguished Honors in Action Project: For Beta Tau Gamma students, that meant working with school administrators, and helping other student organizations design and produce their own infomercial about their organizations.

Said Dr. Ruckel, “Our plan is to place TVs around campus and run these infomercials all the time.”

*1st Honors in Action Award: Economies of Everything. Students had to research a project and come up with an action plan. Beta Tau Gamma students researched why different neighborhoods in Hattiesburg had struggled to rebound from various catastrophic events (tornadoes, flooding, etc.,) in recent years.

Said Dr. Ruckel, “We looked at how these neighborhoods rebounded at different times and the challenges they faced. Some neighborhoods have come back from these catastrophes and some have not. The Mayor (Toby Barker) was instrumental in this project. We were able to make recommendations to the mayor and the Hattiesburg City Council.”

Some of the other awards Beta Tau Gamma and included:

*Golden Key Award: Josh Worbington of Purvis.  

* Regional Horizon Advisor Awards: Dr. Amanda Parker, Dr. Doug Donohue, James David Collum, Dr. Ryan Ruckel, and Dr. Terri Smith Ruckel. 

* The Beta Tau Gammas chapter was elected as Regional Webmaster Officer.

* Extemporaneous Speech Winner: Freshman Feizal Mjidho of Petal.

* Sophomore student Sarah-Ashlyn Barber was confirmed as the MS/LA Candidate for PTK International Vice President of Division II. 

*Five Star Chapter award: The Beta Tau Gammas chapter won this honor for fulfilling all the requirements set forth by PTK headquarters.

PRCC’s Iota Mu chapter, located on the Poplarville Campus and Waveland Center, was also proud to be recognized for the following awards:

*Distinguished Chapter Officer Team – 1st Runner-up

*7th Distinguished Chapter in the MS/LA Region

*9th Distinguished College Project

*9th Distinguished Honors in Action Project

*1st Runner-up HiA Theme Award – Powers of Connection

*Golden Key Award for Frederick McCollum of Prentiss

*Regional Horizon Advisor Awards for Dr. Trevor Hunt, Mr. Jeff McCoy, Mrs. Robin Nix, and Mrs. Lisa Wall

*Elected as Regional CTE Representative

*Five Star Chapter

“Our officers and active members have worked tirelessly this academic year to positively impact their campus and community,” said PTK Advisor, Lisa Wall. “The advisors are so proud of all their hard work, and they are most deserving of these awards!”

Pearl River is proud to be represented by these distinguished students at this level. 

Next up for PRCC’s Phi Theta Kappa chapters will be the International Convention in Orlando, Fla. Set for April 3-7.

Photo 1 Caption: A group of Beta Tau Gamma students, located at PRCC’s Forrest County Center, celebrate their numerous awards. 

Photo 2 Caption: A group of students from the Iota Mu chapter, located on PRCC’s Poplarville Campus and Waveland Center, are excited to take home several accolades. 

Article by: Alexx Kennedy, Communication Specialist  

Photo provided by: PRCC PTK Advisors 

Pearl River Community College offers equal education and employment opportunities.  The College does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, veteran status, or disability.  For inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies or to request accommodations, special assistance, or alternate format publication please contact Tonia M. Seal, Director of Admissions and Records/ ADA/Civil Rights Coordinator at P.O. Box 5559, Poplarville, MS 39470 or 601-403-1060 or Maghan James, Assistant Vice President of Student Services/Title IX Coordinator at P.O. Box 5805, Poplarville, MS 39470 or 601-403-1132.

Each community college president is asked to bring two (2) wrapped door prizes, minimum value of $50 each. We will have a station set up at the conference for you to drop off the door prizes.

Each community college is asked to provide name tags for their Board members, administration, and staff attending the conference.