Honor Societies: Are They Worth Your Time and Money?
The National Honor Society began in 1921, its prestigious name gracing resumes and opening doors for decades hence. As its name suggests, we mark it as a brand of honor. It symbolizes our ability to shine above and beyond our peers in the scholarly realm as well as in leadership, service, and sterling character.
But are honor societies worth it?
Beyond bragging rights, what does the organization do for its participants? We delve deep into this question as we help students decide whether they should aim to be a part of this organization.
What is an Honor Society?
The National Honor Society is like an old tree with many branches. It's chapters span across the United States where they thrive on college and university campuses. For an official look at what they represent and promote, you can click here.
However, we'll give you a Spark Notes-style definition: Honor Society is an organization that aims to help students grow their opportunities for success through career-related resources, discounts, networking, and scholarships.
Organizations are a Part of College Life
While colleges and universities are financial institutions built to educate the masses, getting involved in an on-campus organization is an unspoken expectation. It's a way to not only meet like-minded peers but also to help you grow as a person.
The requirements for joining organizations differ from one to the next. For Honor Society, you must either fill out an application or receive an invitation to become a member.
Invitations go out to students after they achieve some kind of scholarly merit. This includes high GPA's as well as Dean's Lists or President's Lists.
Most require a fee to join, which can range anywhere between $20 to $120. Most of the time, these fees only occur once and last a lifetime, not just for the duration of your college career.
Are Honor Societies Worth It?
Now on to covering the real reason you're here: Are honor societies worth joining? The answer to that question lies in the answer of another:
What are you looking to gain?
There are numerous benefits to joining a genuine Honor Society Chapter, especially for those who are looking to get a headstart and a heads-up on their career and competition.
However, they aren't simply handed to you upon a silver platter. You have to work for them. The Honor Society offers resources and opportunities for members who are willing to go the extra mile(s).
Honor Societies Link Students to Scholarships
The Honor Society has many partnerships and resources, which it shares with its chapters. On top of that, each chapter may offer other unique opportunities based on its own connections within the community.
This includes scholarships. Anyone applying for or attending college knows how quickly students loans can pile up. Yet scholarship opportunities are extremely competitive.
Through your Honor Society, you can gain access to scholarships information and applications to help you decrease the cost of your education. Many of these scholarships connect with the values the organization stands for, such as academic excellence, leadership, community service, and examples of good character.
Honor Societies Offer Opportunities for Networking
A good chapter will have connections with local businesses or even large corporations. This includes putting on events and benefits with key players in the business world, such as owners or influencers.
You'll find more opportunities to network with professionals and gain insight into different professions. It's a huge leg up for you if you want to get a headstart in your career.
New college graduates quickly find that career opportunities often stem not from job applications but from knowing the right people. Having contacts in your field at an early stage can set you up for a career through recommendations and introductions.
Honor Societies Group You With Peers of Similar Interest
Getting to know a brand new set of friends is one of the biggest worries new students have when entering the college realm. When you join the Honor Society, you instantly become part of a community.
Because the requirements are the same for all students in the chapter, you automatically find yourself among people with commonalities. Striking up a conversation is easier and you are more likely to get along with them.
The more active you are in your chapter, the more friends you will likely make.
Honor Societies Can Connect You With Unique Benefits
With good partnerships come great benefits. Many companies that support the Honor Society try to build long-term relationships with its members through unique benefits.
This can be anything from discounts on goods and services to freebies, gift cards, and events. It's a great perk, especially if you're constantly trying to stretch every dollar on a shoestring budget.
If you aren't sure what kind of benefits come with your chapter's membership, be sure to ask!
Honor Societies Link Students to Career Enhancement Opportunities
Honor Society chapters are all about helping its members advance their career paths. This includes sharing internships and other job opportunities as they arise. With most positions requiring some level of experience, this is a highly valuable resource!
Students who want to give themselves the best chances of finding the job they want right out of college aim to gain as much experience as possible before they graduate. This includes internships and volunteer opportunities.
So... Is It Worth It?
The short answer is yes, so long as you are active and make the most of your Honor Society membership.
But remember: no two chapters are entirely alike. Before you jump on board with a specific chapter, take the time to familiarize yourself with its activities and offerings. Also, make sure the organization is a true chapter of the Honor Society and not a fake.
Get Ahead in the Business World
If you're asking the question, "Are honor societies worth it?" then it's safe to say you care about your future. You're probably looking to set yourself up for a career path rich with promise and profit.
If so, don't stop here. Explore our plethora of business articles. We cover a vast array of facts, tips, and tricks to help you gauge the cost of certain endeavors and set yourself up for the greatest odds of success.