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Eye on Psi Chi: Spring/Summer 2013
Expand Your Honor Society Connections on Campus
Martha Zlokovich, PhD, Psi Chi Executive Director

Are you a chapter officer or student who would like to develop programs or activities with another group of high-achieving students
on campus? Would you like to connect with honor society members from different departments? Fortunately, Psi Chi is one of 66 honor society members of the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), whose mission is, "to build
a visibly cohesive community of national and international honor societies that promotes the values of higher education; fosters excellence in scholarship, leadership, service, and research; and adheres to the standards of honor society excellence” ( retrieved April 14, 2013). Thus, your Psi Chi chapter is connected
to other honor societies, and leveraging these connections can benefit your chapter as well as individual members.

Being an ACHS member means that these honor societies have been reviewed and found
to uphold high academic standards, consistent eligibility requirements, and the advancement of their individual members. Some honor societies, such as National Society of Collegiate Scholars and Alpha Chi, are open to people in all fields of study. Others, such as Psi Chi (Psychology), Alpha Phi Sigma (Criminal Justice), and Beta Gamma Sigma (Business), are open only to people in a particular field of study. As for Psi Chi, chapters may induct students majoring or minoring in psychology, so many Psi Chi members may be members of the honor societies associated with other fields of study as well.

On-Campus Compatriots
This means you have many reliable resources outside of the psychology department, yet still on your campus. By searching for honor societies on your university website and comparing that list to that of ACHS members, you can easily verify which honor societies are certified. Your university’s website is likely to provide links directly to the advisors and officers of the honor society chapters on your campus.

Chapter advisors also have a group of chapter advisors on their own campuses with whom they can discuss maintaining eligibility standards, campus policies, and how best to mentor their chapters. The officers who make up your chapter’s Executive Committee have a much larger group of peers than themselves with whom to compare notes. Each honor society on campus also has an Executive Committee with whom your officers can collaborate and share information.

Off-Campus Contacts
You can also broaden the scope of your chapter’s connections outside of your university. When looking for guest speakers or alumni to visit your chapter to talk about their experiences in graduate school or on the job, you can more than double
your options by contacting other honor societies, especially those that many Psi Chi members join. Did you know that some honor societies allow faculty and professionals to join and remain active members of their local chapters or of alumni chapters? Psi Chi allows psychology majors, minors, graduate students, alumni who graduated before their campus had a chapter, and full-time faculty with a doctorate in psychology to join, but does not yet have alumni chapters. These outside professionals can serve as very relevant and engaging speakers.

A particular off-campus connection may be Psi Beta if there is a chapter in or near your city ( retrieved April 29, 2013). Psi Beta is the psychology honor society for two-year colleges. Students who earn an AA or AS in psychology frequently transfer to 4-year universities, and if they enter with officer or member experience in Psi Beta, these students can contribute a vibrant source of engaged new members to your chapter.

These ideas may sound familiar if you are a member of a fraternity or sorority, because these groups often cooperate with one another informally or formally through a Panhellenic association. The advantage to this is that a speaker who is a member of both Psi Chi and another honor society or off- campus institution can increase the audience. Two (or more) honor societies can advertise an event better than one, field more people to assist on the day of the event, and encourage more people to attend. On some campuses, especially if the event
is open to all students, such collaborations can also make the cooperating organizations eligible for more student government or other student event funding than applying as one organization. You should put these tried and true collaboration ideas to work for your honor society today.

A high school teacher in Pensacola, Florida, inspired Dr. Martha S. Potter Zlokovich to pursue psychology as a career. She completed her BA in psychology at UCLA, and MS and PhD in developmental psychology at the University of Florida.

Dr. Zlokovich joined Psi Chi in 2008 as its second Executive Director, leaving Southeast Missouri State University after teaching there for 17 years. This move, however, was not her first involvement with Psi Chi. She served as chapter advisor since 1993, as Midwestern Region Vice-President (1998-2000), and as National President of Psi Chi (2003-04). In 1996, Southeast’s chapter won the Ruth Hubbard Cousin’s National Chapter of the Year Award, and several chapter members have won Psi Chi Regional Research Awards at MPA and/or had their research published in Psi Chi's Journal.

At Southeast, Dr. Zlokovich taught Child Development, Adolescent Development, Lifespan Development, Advanced Child Psychology, and Introductory Psychology for Majors. She also served as chair of the department. Her research interests have focused on student study habits, study beliefs, and persistence to graduation as well as adolescent and young adult contraception and sexuality.

Dr. Zlokovich and her husband Neil have two sons and a daughter-in-law. Aaron (Truman State University, 2010) and Stephanie live in Lexington, KY and Matthew is a senior civil engineering major at the University of Alabama.

Copyright 2013 (Volume 17, Issue 3) by Psi Chi, the International Honor Society in Psychology


Eye on Psi Chi is a magazine designed to keep members and alumni up-to-date with all the latest information about Psi Chi’s programs, awards, and chapter activities. It features informative articles about careers, graduate school admission, chapter ideas, personal development, the various fields of psychology, and important issues related to our discipline.

Eye on Psi Chi is published quarterly:
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