New Transfer Scholarship: Neumann University

Neumann University is a private, Catholic university that was founded in 1965. As a Franciscan institution, it emphasizes respect for individuals, concern for the environment, and social responsibility.

Located in Aston, Pennsylvania, Neumann sits in the Delaware Valley about a half hour away from Philadelphia. It’s home to 24 NCAA sports teams, boasts a student-faculty ratio of 14 to 1, and has an average enrollment of nearly 3,000 students.

Learn more about the newest Phi Theta Kappa transfer scholarship and Neumann University in this brief Q&A.

Tell us about your college’s new transfer scholarship for Phi Theta Kappa members.

A PTK scholarship in the amount of $3,000 ($1,500 each semester) is given to incoming full-time transfer students. Students are considered for the scholarship at the time of application to the university and will need to submit a copy of their PTK membership card/record as a supplemental item with their application.

Why does your college feel it’s important to offer a scholarship opportunity for members?

Transfer students are a vital part of the Neumann community. Students who demonstrate strong academic performance at the community college should be rewarded.

Are there other transfer scholarships that could be stacked with your Phi Theta Kappa award?

Neumann offers three different merit scholarships for all full-time transfer students. Scholarships range from $9,000 to $13,000 depending on academic performance. The PTK scholarship is stackable with all merit scholarships.

Transfer students are also eligible for an on-campus grant should they decide to live on campus. Neumann also offers a Legacy Award for students who have siblings, parents, or grandparents who are alumni/graduates of Neumann.

What other opportunities are available for transfer students at your institution to assist them in successfully transitioning from community college?

Neumann offers a Transfer Orientation designed specifically for transfer students at the start of each term. Students are able to meet with advisors, purchase books, receive a student ID, and attend sessions on what to expect as a transfer student. Students will also be assigned an advisor upon enrolling at the university.

In your opinion, what is one of the most impressive things about your college?

Neumann University is a most welcoming community. From the moment I stepped foot on campus, people knew my name from Day 1, and I knew I had chosen the perfect place. You will feel like part of a family as soon as you visit.

Neumann is a Franciscan institution, so we do have a religious background. Being Franciscan simply means we are a kind, giving, and nurturing community. So many people have made Neumann successful in our short time as a university, so we continually want to give back to our community.

At Neumann, we not only want our students to do well in their studies and college life, but we also want them to do good. Help a neighbor in need, volunteer at a local food kitchen, and live a life that is both successful and ethical.

Are there any special events or deadlines on your recruitment calendar that you would like to share?

Neumann University has created a few events just for transfer students. We offer Instant Decision on campus for all non-nursing students. Students must be applied before the visit. The student can bring official or unofficial transcripts and receive an Instant Decision, along with a tour of campus and meeting with an admission staff members. Check our website for visit dates, which are offered throughout each semester and over the summer.

Application deadlines are as follows:

Summer Deadlines:

  • Part-time Nursing Application: April 1
  • Deposit: May 1

Fall Deadlines:

  • Preferred Nursing Application: April 1
  • Deposit: May 1
  • Final Application: July 1
  • Final Deposit: July 15

Spring Deadlines:

  • Preferred Nursing: November 1
  • Final Application: December 1
  • Deposit: January 3

Find more transfer scholarships like this one at PTK Connect.

Three Unforgettable Days

There are as many reasons to attend PTK Catalyst in Orlando as there are theme park attractions at Universal Studios and Disney combined. Not only is PTK Catalyst the biggest PTK Party of the Year, it is a time of celebration, learning, recognition, and fellowship—all rolled into three unforgettable days! Here are a few of my top reasons you should go:

Over the past several years, we have increased the quality and diversity of our Educational Forums. And, for those of you who have never attended before, Educational Forums are short seminars that cover everything from yoga and using improv to develop your leadership skills to how to complete the FAFSA and tips for successful transfer. There truly is something for everyone.

Our Senior College Transfer Fair is also what I like to consider a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Universities and four-year colleges from across the country travel to Catalyst just to tell you about the opportunities and PTK transfer scholarships available at their schools. You will have an opportunity to connect with dozens of transfer recruiters without ever stepping foot on campus.

Catalyst is also an opportunity to cast your chapter’s vote for the next group of International Officer Candidates. You will have an unprecedented opportunity to connect with candidates in the Marketplace and through two live caucus events. You won’t want to miss it!

This year’s general session speakers are going to be nothing less than inspiring. Former CNN host and author Mel Robbins will talk to us about her Mindset Reset. And author and former felon Chef Jeff Henderson will tell us how he turned his life around after serving in prison for more than a decade.

Who could forget about the Hallmark Awards Gala? The culmination of all your hard work, the Hallmark Awards Gala is truly a night of celebration—recognizing the hard work of our amazing students and advisors and the impact you are having on your campus and in your community.

And, finally—PTK Catalyst is an unforgettable time of fun and fellowship, where you will see old friends and make new ones. From human foosball and the Scholar Bowl to the Farewell Celebration, PTK Catalyst is always the PTK Party of the Year!

3-Step Guide to Gaining Support from Your Foundation

Editor’s Note: This post was written and submitted by Dr. Annie Tuttle, New York Regional Coordinator and advisor to the Alpha Sigma Zeta Chapter at Onondaga Community College in New York.

Let’s face it: all Phi Theta Kappa chapters could use a little (or a lot of) help with funding, and your college foundation is the perfect place to start. College foundations exist to raise money to support scholarships, programs, and opportunities for the students on their campus. That’s you!

Asking for their support is easier than you think. I’ve broken it down into three simple steps.

Step 1

Talk to your college president or college administration about the true financial needs of your chapter, as well as the personal financial limitations that often prevent students from becoming PTK members. When students can’t afford to join, they lose out on the benefits of membership like scholarship money, leadership development, and finding a home on campus.

It is often our most financially limited students who need the benefits that PTK can provide. Suggest to your college administration that your college foundation may be able/willing to help high-achieving students on your campus. Plant the seed.

Step 2

Set up a meeting to discuss precisely how your college foundation can help high-achieving students on your campus. Let them know what the benefits of membership are — scholarship money, leadership development, even create some campus benefits like early-registration — and be sure to inform the foundation about the difference PTK makes in college graduation rates. Find data on the PTK completion rate, both nationally and in your state, by viewing these State Profiles.

When you go to the foundation, also let them know that your chapter works on a College Project and is continually working to better the college as a whole.

Be sure to let them know that many colleges around the country have successfully partnered with their college foundation, such as here at Onondaga Community College and at Schenectady County Community College, both in New York. PTK Headquarters can help you identify chapters who receive this type of support.

They may even help you find donors for other PTK initiatives. For example, because my chapter has created such a great relationship with our foundation, they recently secured a donor who will provide all members from our chapter with free commencement and PTK regalia.

Step 3

Finally, ask your college foundation how your chapter can be of service to them. For example, volunteer for your chapter to help the foundation with events or fundraisers. Show the foundation that your chapter is willing to partner and help them achieve their goals, too. It can benefit the college foundation to have a go-to group of students to meet with donors and community partners.

Further, the college foundation can help PTK members pay it forward in the future. As alumni, PTK members (a.k.a. high-achieving students) are more likely to become potential donors in the future.

Overall, the idea is to help the foundation see that your chapter is making a difference in the lives of your students. This could inspire them, and they might be more willing to help with funding for your chapter.

I AM PTK: Jeff Jaureguy

Jeff Jaureguy has had some experiences many will only ever dream about. He hiked the Himalayan mountains. He traveled India south-to-north by train. He visited the birthplace of Buddha.

Spotted three Bengal tigers on a safari trip. Celebrated Holi, the Festival of Colors, in Puskar. Heard the Dalai Lama speak to Tibetans in India about happiness and health.

“The experience helped me see the interconnectedness of our human experience,” he said. “A lot of amazing, beautiful, liberating experiences. Words are not enough.”

Jeff grew up in California and graduated from high school in 2007. He took a few community college classes but ultimately wasn’t interested in school at the time. He’d had a tough time in school in his youth and struggled with anxiety and depression, so he quit college and took on construction and restaurant jobs for several years, often struggling to pay his bills.

It was during this work that he became interested in Eastern philosophy. He wanted to become a yoga instructor and a massage therapist, so he enrolled in MiraCosta College in California for their training programs in the two fields. This led him to India and Nepal.

“I was fascinated with meditation and yoga and wanted to understand the culture from where these fantastic tools for personal transformation and self-realization originated from,” he said.

While traveling, Jeff volunteered at a nonprofit program teaching English to Tibetan refugees. He also volunteered at a veterinary clinic in India, where he assisted in giving shots and applying bandages to stray dogs.

For the last four years, he’s been working with the Bishwa Seva Foundation, volunteering and raising funds for children in Nepal. He and his fiancé are sponsoring a 12-year-old Nepali girl so she can attend school.

“After traveling and seeing so many environmental issues, poverty, and suffering in the world, I decided I wanted to dedicate my life to education and service,” he said. “This sense of universal responsibility is what motivates me to succeed.”

After returning home, Jeff took a field job as an independent contractor surveying for endangered species in the Central Valley of California. He worked with other biologists surveying the endangered Gambelia sila, a species of lizard. This job created a desire to become more qualified and educated, leading him back to MiraCosta.

“I don’t believe that the traditional ‘pipeline’ to school after high school is the correct path in life for everyone, and there are so many things to learn about life that are not within academia,” he said, adding a quote from Mark Twain: “I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”

Jeff enrolled in 2015 as a biology major. While there, he was vice president of scholarship for his Phi Theta Kappa chapter and was named to the 2018 All-USA Academic Team. He was also president of MiraCosta’s STEM research club, which he co-created, and conducted research on various ecological projects in a lab at California State University San Marcos (CSUSM).

He has presented his research at national STEM conferences, and he received an academic excellence award for research completed during a summer internship at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Jeff shared his story in a promotional video for MiraCosta College last year.

He is now completing his bachelor’s degree in biology with a minor in mathematics at CSUSM. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. in bio-informatics with an emphasis in machine learning and statistics at the University of California San Diego.

“Being a Hispanic male, I would like to change the demographics of graduate school; only 2 percent of Hispanics go on to a Ph.D.,” he said. “My ultimate goal is to lead my research lab at a top-tier research institution and encourage other Hispanic and underrepresented minorities to pursue higher-level educational degrees.”

Also on his to-do list? Returning to Nepal, where he plans to visit the school funded through the Bishwa Seva Foundation and give a STEM workshop. He turns 30 this year and finally finds himself at a place in his life where he knows he’s heading in the right direction, that his life’s purpose is unfolding.

“I make sure to live life so I will have no regrets,” he said. “I show up every day and give it my all because I am blessed and am in full gratitude for my life.”

#PTKServeDay: How You Can Participate (and Why You Should)

Editor’s Note: This post was written and submitted by David Parker, International Vice President for Division 2.

It’s hard to believe it’s been three years since I received the fateful email inviting me to join Phi Theta Kappa. Accepting membership significantly altered the path of my time in college, and now that I’m in the midst of my final semester before transferring, I’m left with much to reflect on.

I have gained countless memories, lessons, and bonds from this organization throughout the years, all of which generate a sense of unshakable nostalgia. There is only one answer, however, that I would give if asked what has been the most rewarding aspect of PTK. This one thing, that has shined the most out of this incredible three-year blur, is service.

Service, whether in the form of serving in a leadership capacity or taking time to help others, has taught me the most lessons, created the most memories, and developed the strongest bonds between my peers and I. As a Hallmark, service silently reminds us of our fortune and reciprocates kindness. Many members join our honor society at the prospect of the opportunity to not only give back, but to also share the experience with like-minded servant leaders.

This is why I am so excited to introduce the first-ever PTK Serve Day to take place on March 2. A day to show pride in one of our Hallmarks, a day to celebrate our commitment to charity, and a day to demonstrate what it means to be a Phi Theta Kappan.

On this day, we encourage chapters and members from all over the world to post pictures of their favorite service events over the past year using #PTKServeDay or, if possible, go out and engage the community with your helping hands. Let’s flood each other’s timelines with examples of service. This would be the perfect way to wrap up PTK Awareness Week, which will be happening from February 25 to March 1.

Here’s a chance for your chapter to Increase its visibility both in the community and online. A chance to engage your members with meaningful and rewarding opportunities. A chance to highlight to your prospective members the types of experiences they can be a part of.

Did I also mention there’s a contest taking place? In addition to posting on social media, you can also send your best pictures to PTKsocial@ptk.org for a chance to be spotlighted on PTK’s official website banner! If you do, don’t forget to include your chapter and college name along with a description of the service project in your email. Send it with the subject line, “PTK Serve Day Photo Contest.” Best of luck!

I have a friend who, whenever she talks about service, mentions Maya Angelou’s famous quote: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

So, I charge you with this. How will you be remembered? What words and actions will you leave behind before you enter the next chapter of your life? And, when those impressions fade, how will you make them feel this PTK Serve Day?

5 Easy Ways to Convert Eligibles to Members

It’s still early in 2019, but many students at your college have already received invitations to join Phi Theta Kappa this year. Time for you to get to work converting these eligible students into active members.

It’s easier than you think, and it’s important — more members equal stronger projects and more diversity for your chapter, and you’re giving more students access to exclusive scholarship and leadership opportunities. You’re also setting your chapter up to receive REACH Rewards. Meet or exceed a 15 percent acceptance rate, and you’ll earn free graduation stoles for your chapter.

(Side note: If you’re hoping to be named among the Top 10 Distinguished Chapters at the 2020 annual convention, you’re not eligible unless you’re also named a REACH chapter for your recruitment efforts in 2019. This is a change from previous years, so adding new members is more important than ever.)

How can you turn a prospective member into an active member? Don’t leave it up to chance — try one (or more!) of these simple ideas.

1. Offer Golden Opportunity Scholarships

The cost of membership is the top reason eligible students don’t join Phi Theta Kappa. That’s why we offer the Golden Opportunity Scholarship, which waives the $60 international membership fee. Students must be nominated by their chapter advisor for this scholarship, and the nomination period is open now through 5 p.m. CT on Monday, April 1.

  • Up to three students many be nominated per chapter
  • Part-time, full-time, and international students are eligible
  • Priority should be given to students who are financially needy

Your chapter can also offer its own version of a Golden Opportunity Scholarship. Work with your college president or Foundation to see if money is available to cover the cost of membership. Or, waive your local chapter fee for a limited time.

2. Participate in PTK Awareness Week

Our Spring Awareness Week is February 25-March 1. Chapters across the country will host recruitment events to talk up PTK and increase visibility on their campuses. Wear your PTK shirts all week, set up a table in a high-traffic area, hang posters, give away food — these are simple ways to make your Awareness Week membership blitz easy but effective.

You can also participate in our events:

  • February 25 — Live Kickoff on Facebook and Instagram

Scholar-Athletes Score Double the Recognition

Leighton Anderson started playing soccer when she was 4 years old, when her parents noticed she had a lot of extra energy that needed an outlet. She’s grateful they pushed her into the sport — it’s been her relief on stressful days and an added bonus to good ones.

“Even though I have to balance my course work with the sport, it’s as though soccer helps me become a better student,” she said. “The traits that I have acquired through the sport have also helped me succeed in the classroom — leadership, teamwork, time management, and overall health. Soccer keeps my head clear and focused.”

As captain of the women’s soccer team at Hinds Community College in Mississippi, Leighton is one of about 60,000 student-athletes served each year by the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA). She’s also a Phi Theta Kappa member.

Students like Leighton have inspired Phi Theta Kappa to team up with the NJCAA to recognize students who are excelling both on and off the field. Under a new partnership, PTK members who are also college athletes can now purchase a special edition NJCAA™ Honors Stole for graduation. The stole features both the PTK emblem and the NJCAA seal.

“So many of our college student-athletes are stars both inside and outside the classroom,” said PTK President and CEO Dr. Lynn Tincher-Ladner. “We are so honored to recognize their academic achievements and also their tireless dedication to their sport, team, and community.”

The NJCAA was founded in 1938 and is the nation’s premier governing body for two-year collegiate athletics. It has more than 500 member schools in 42 states.

The organization doesn’t just focus on sports; it also recognizes entire teams and individuals that achieve a 3.6 GPA or higher each year with academic awards. And, it names three Student-Athletes of the Year each July.

NJCAA President and CEO Dr. Christopher Parker said the new partnership will allow the association to maintain a focus on and commitment to the academic success of its student-athletes.

“Student-athletes have to manage time carefully to be the best they can in the classroom and on the field, thus highlighting all avenues of success, especially in the classroom, are just as significant to each individual student-athlete,” he said. “Partnering with PTK will continue to show students the value of an organization like PTK and how sports and academics together can be so rewarding.”

Student-athletes face many challenges — trying to squeeze homework around practice, games, and traveling can be a burden. Factor in that many student-athletes also work or have other obligations, and it’s remarkable what they achieve.

“Maintaining a high GPA is challenging enough as it is, but being an honors student and college athlete puts an even greater workload to any day,” Leighton said. “I have to stay focused on the outcome through it all. Some days are more strenuous than others, but when I think of the individual growth I am obtaining through it all, the challenges are worth it.”

Leighton joined Phi Theta Kappa for the scholarship opportunities, but it’s turned into another successful team she can be part of. And come graduation, she won’t have to settle for only being recognized for some of her accomplishments at Hinds.

“I love the fact that not only am I being recognized as a part of PTK honor society, but a PTK member who is also committed to an athletic team,” she said. “Juggling the two may seem impossible to others, but being able to wear regalia at graduation shows others that I accepted the challenge and succeeded.

“I believe it reveals to others the kind of determined student-athlete I am.”

Order your NJCAA™ Honors Stole today!