Honors society gets involved at BC


Alisia Sanchez

President of the local Phi Theta Kappa chapter, Beta Alpha Nu, Kristen Clark-White leads the honor society and discusses food pantry donations.

Elizabeth Castillo, Reporter

Phi Theta Kappa, an international honor society, has a local chapter that hopes to celebrate high-achieving Bakersfield College students with scholarship and leadership opportunities.

Beta Alpha Nu, the local chapter on campus, holds regular events to raise money for the organization and provide students with community service experience. Phi Theta Kappa is an invitation only organization. This ensures that students with a high caliber of academic achievement at BC are chosen to be a part of the organization and are given access to upwards of $37 million a year in scholarship funds.

“Among us membership is a privilege earned by qualifications, honor, and service,” states the preamble of the organization’s constitution.

On the local level, BC student Kristen Clark-White hopes to lead the organization into a successful future. Clark-White currently serves as the president of Beta Alpha Nu and wants the organization to shine on campus.

“I decided to become president because I have managerial experience and this chapter desperately needed it,” she said. “We needed someone to come in and help figure out finances, procedures and above all getting us seen on campus more to increase our participation.”

Clark-White is currently undecided about her future at BC, but has found leading Beta Alpha Nu a rewarding experience. She said that she finds alumni of the organization throughout Bakersfield and around campus. Several professors on campus have been involved with the organization, and Clark-White said that she may eventually stay in Bakersfield to continue the growth of the chapter at BC.

Although a student must first be invited to officially join the organization as a member, Clark-White said that students who have not yet received an invitation can still participate in Phi Theta Kappa.

“We still allow students to participate as a provisional member,” she said. “They will not hold office or have any voting privileges but they are welcome to be a part of our chapter while they work to becoming an eligible member.”

To become a member, students must complete 12 units at BC and have an accumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher. Invitations to join the organization are sent out at the beginning of a new semester. There is a $75 fee to join the organization, but Clark-White said that students shouldn’t be deterred by the fee.

“At first I thought it was a scam email,” she said. “I had never heard of PTK on campus before. Once I took the time to look into it, I was excited and honored.”

Members earn valuable leadership experience as an elected officer, and help with the organization’s Honors in Action Project. The project is the organization’s way of providing back to the community of Bakersfield.