Students have been receiving emails from an organization called ‘Honor Society’ that is unaffiliated with the University. The email prompts students to activate their membership and fill out information to create an account and eventually pay money.  

According to Jennifer Crenshaw, SFA’s School of Honors’ senior program associate, these emails are not new and have been around for at least a decade.  

Due to the Texas Public Information Act (PIA), which allows citizens to request access to public information, organizations like Honor Society can request access to SFA’s students directory. The information provided in the student directory is outlined in SFA’s university policy 2.10 under Student Records. Information included in the student directory are name, all addresses, all telephone numbers, major field of study, academic classification, participation in recognized activities/sports, weight/height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance and enrollment status, degrees and awards received, previously attended schools, photograph and class roster.  

The University has permission to disclose the aforementioned information without written consent unless the student has requested otherwise through the appropriate channels outlined in the policy.  

With the information available, this organization has relevant information on awards, email addresses and major fields of study. This information does not include education information defined in the Policy 2.10since it is protected by the 1974 Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) 

A Honor Society representative said initiation is determined by information provided by schools, however they do not have visible access to said information. They did not disclose whether or not GPA or achievements are the reason students are accepted, only that they are qualified to join.  

There are honor programs and societies affiliated with SFA that are official, including the School of Honors which is free but requires a certain number of honor credits to stay included.  

Other honor societies on campus include: Phi Epsilon Kappa (PEK) for Kinesiology and Health Science majors, Sigma Tau Delta, an english honorary society, Alpha Psi Omega, a theatrical honor society, Beta Gamma Sigma, an honor society for the Rusche College of Business and PsiCh, an honor society for psychology majors.  

However, some honor organizations affiliated with SFA do charge fees to join. For example, Omicron Delta Kappa does require payment to join, but is a nationally recognized leadership society and is active on campus. 

 

“I don’t want people to think, ‘Oh they’re asking for money, so it's not legit’ or ‘it's free, so it is legit.’ It’s not really that simple,” Crenshaw said.  

She said she encourages students to look into organizations they are considering joining and to do research on whether or not they are SFA affiliated.  

“Like with anything, dig further, ask the questions. If you contact the Honor Society and ask if its SFA affiliated, they’ll have to say no; legally they’re not,” Crenshaw said.  

She said she also recommends visiting the Student Life office to view official, SFA affiliated organizations.  

Dr. Andrew Dies, assistant vice president of student affairs and dean of students, sent out an email March 28 warning students that Honor Society is not SFA affiliated and to look into it individually. 

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.