Friday, October 20, 2017

Leadership Development and Scholarship Opportunities Through PTK

by Sanjib Lamichhane

When I volunteered in Induction Ceremony of Alpha Theta Phi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) at LaGuardia Community College, I was glad to see how highly motivated scholars and co-operative mentors were working to make the event successful. I was less updated about the organization’s events; however, I have always wanted to be a member of the Honor Society. Because I did not know how it works, I was reluctant to get into it. But as soon as I spent few hours volunteering at the Induction Ceremony, it did not take much time for me to admit this is where I belong.

Being an aspiring leader in Tech Ecosystem, I want to be a Tech Entrepreneur and use my knowledge to benefit less privileged people in the society. That’s my ultimate goal of life. There are people in my home country, Nepal, who live in hardship in absence of geographically compatible technologies. Meanwhile, the Government of Nepal is primarily focused on institutionalizing Democracy, thereby less prioritizing the tech industry, I want to help the Government by taking a lead to invent technologies exclusively designed for the mountainous country like Nepal. In order to achieve this goal, I believe, PTK honor society will help me access potential scholarship opportunities to attend one of the competitive schools in the States.

I am inspired by the officers of the society who explained the benefits of being in the society. One of the things I like about the society is that I would be able to access numerous transfer scholarship opportunities just by being a member of the society. In addition, I would be able to master my soft skills and leadership attitude, which is possible through the Five Star Competitive Edge program. The society would provide me opportunities to participate in leadership, service and fellowship programming. Moreover, becoming an officer, participating in a leadership training course, participating in Honors in Action project, helping to organize club fair, etc. will all add up to personal growth. I am so excited to join PTK honor society as it also provides me a space to cooperate with a pool of intellectual people.  

Monday, October 2, 2017

PTK: A Golden Opportunity

by Rupak Kadel

I have always been looking for volunteer and leadership opportunities to prepare myself for the competitive future. After completing my education at LaGuardia Community College, I want to transfer to one of the renowned universities in the USA where I can finish my undergraduate degree comfortably. I was excited to learn that joining Phi Theta Kappa opens the door to all those opportunities that the students need to achieve success in life.

To be fair, I was never active in social activities from my childhood. I was unaware of the importance of the involvement in extracurricular activities. PTK provides opportunities to students to develop leadership qualities, and it organizes different events where members can volunteer. It helps to prepare us to transform into a better and professional person. Moreover, the members are offered various kinds of transfer scholarships which helps us to minimize the cost of attendance of the 4-year college. I have always focused on my education. So, I can say that my strongest point is education. I have a desire to work as a software engineer in one of the renowned technological companies. Since my childhood, I’ve been attracted by different types games and software. I have a desire to master the field of computer science. So far, I have not taken many computer courses except C++ programming. I am taking the science and the math courses that are required for the completion of Computer Science degree. When I researched PTK after coming to LaGCC in March, I thought joining PTK would definitely help to achieve my goal. I want to get involved in different events and gain experience which can be helpful to build my career. The most selective universities also look for the students who involve in volunteering and extracurricular activities. So, the opportunities that PTK provides will ultimately bring closer to my goal.

Finally, the benefits like leadership opportunities, volunteering and transfer scholarships that the PTK provides will help the students like us to prepare for the future. I am extremely pleased to get invitation from one of the most prestigious honor society.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Honors in Action, a Way to Move Forward

by Caroline Wong

Expectations. Deadlines. Pressure. We all know these three words. As students, once life starts rolling in our consciousness, we start rolling too. We make commitments, we might go to school, have classes, work, or even a family life to preserve. We sometimes have too many things on our mind. It is hard, but it is good. It is good if you know how to surpass the difficulties leading you to fail. In fact, learning how to balance everything, putting priorities first, is good.

From the day I started to go to College in the US, I started to learn how to manage my time better. My nature isn’t to be an organized person who is on top of everything, but I still try and will continue to try and execute this until the moon reaches the sun which I hope will never happen. One thing that motivates me to “dare to do more” and to become the manager of my own life and duties everyday is my community at LaGuardia. In fact, being part of the Alpha Theta Phi chapter of Phi Theta Kappa made me realize how much I can bring, and how much I can do to impact my environment. Once I had this viewpoint, I started to be willing to move into action and show to the public that my words weren't just words, but transformed into action. After being a member for a semester, I applied to be part of the officers team of this Honor Society. After votes and discussions between the chosen officers, I started to be in charge of all the Programming and Events occurring this year in our chapter.

After that, during Summer, I was meeting with the officers and some members on a weekly basis for a pretty big project we were and are still constructing little by little called the Honors in Action (HIA) project. It gives us the opportunity to work/collaborate with a team, to go to a conference in another city of the State where we will meet other chapters as well as having professionals who would give us tips and training on how to manage this project. This project also allows us to host a special event dedicated for the HIA project each year and to present our final project at the PTK NY regional Spring Convention where we will be able to earn prizes for our work and be recognized for it.

The Honors in Action project and other commitments we took on are teaching us about life and ways to move forward. If I should think for a bit about what the HIA project taught me so far, I would say the following: to trust the team I work with and be confident regarding what they are capable of sharing, to respect other people’s ideas, to enjoy each moment I get to spend with the members from the team as well as other individuals I might meet during the process. We can learn so much from anything we experience and each experience is so unique. I believe that even though we might be having a full schedule, we still can manage it. Life isn't hard if we do not see is as being hard. I find it exciting and inspiring but also tiring if I would start being afraid of saying no to new commitments.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

The Importance of Research

by Mary Naughton

Doing research on our H.I.A. topic has led to a lot of interesting information. I have found it particularly interesting with regards to the way the media reports the news. There can be so many conflicting viewpoints concerning the same piece of information. Some perspectives are reflective of the person or news stations’ beliefs, and this is where you can see differences in reporting occurring. The more I researched this topic, I began seeing it everywhere. I read a book that focuses on our unconscious minds and I found that it explains biases. In some way or another, biases occur with everyone in an in-group versus out-group thought process. It is more deeply ingrained than many of us realize, and it isn’t limited to how we view someone else’s culture, background, or beliefs. It is the way we view anyone that falls into the “other” category of the way we identify. For instance, as a New Yorker, we would consider other New Yorkers as part of our in-group. Compared to the out-group, which in this instance, would be anyone from another state. This, often unconsciously, puts us in a position which views anyone who is part of our same in-group more favorably than someone who does not.

The importance of this is being aware of it. If we are consciously aware than we can strive for objectivity when we receive or share information. The best possible outcome, would be to hear from all sides and perspectives to get a better understanding of the situation. The research aspect of the H.I.A. project, will help me to seek out proper scholarly articles. Also, I find it easier to skim through various articles and publications to find the most meaningful selections, which will aid in the project. While, the internet makes finding information so much easier, it can also overwhelm you with results, many of which are likely unrelated to your needs. The benefit of knowing how to filter your search and sort based on your current needs is crucial. Working on this H.I.A. project has done just that for me. The experience I have gained in research, will be greatly beneficial as I select and finalize my choices for which college I plan to continue to. This is another example of an influx of potentially overwhelming information, but I can take what I know I want in a college and set my own criteria. From these criteria, I can match it against potential college choices to find the one best suited to my needs. Also, as to be expected, I will be able to apply what I’ve learned to completing research assignments for future classes. 

Self-development through Phi Theta Kappa

by Kedar Babu Shrestha, HIA Coordinator Officer

As an honor student at LaGuardia Community College and member of Phi Theta Kappa, every Honor in Action meeting that I attend is a great asset to me. First, taking the leadership roles as an Honors in Action coordinator and taking different leadership development workshop such as Leadership training is helping me to develop myself to lead, manage and motivate and also overcome my obstacle. For instance, during the leadership training I got to know my top five strengths as an arranger, responsible, restorer, inclusive and a contributor. Using these strengths to win over weakness, have a successful HIA meeting and build up myself to lead the session as a leader has made me overcome my obstacles. I have improved my ability to work in the team, communicate, management my time, taking on new roles, and improve my public speaking.

Second, in the Five-star competitive edge program I learned how to think deeply and how to do academic research. I also learned how to make academic research fun. Moreover, the Library Workshop and in-depth HIA discussions help me a lot in my officer position, but also these activities are help me improve my research skills.

Third, people all over the world are facing a problem creating global awareness and this is leading me to give something back to my community. The best part is that this helps me learn in a new environment and enables me to redefine my comfort zone and push myself beyond what I would normally do.

When I first joined PTK, I was excited and happy, but at the same time I was overwhelmed. It was my second leadership role after my high school; I thought that I lacked what it would take to fulfill my position successfully. As the days passed, I started getting onto track through self-improvement. Apart from HIA, Phi Theta Kappa is building up me to the next level let me grow and connect with people within and outside the community. It is not only helping me to help others but it is contributing to my success in overcoming the obstacles that I never knew I could and the challenges I am faced on a daily basis in New York. These experiences are making into a hardworking, multi-tasking, efficient, healthy individual. I am overcoming hardships every day because of Phi Theta Kappa. All the skills, personal development, and motivation through PTK will help me to develop my career in the field I pursue and make my dream come true.