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A Thriving Hispanic Honor Society
At Florida State University

By Alejandro Perez

 Florida state University opens a new path for Hispanic students in the United States. The creation of a Hispanic Honor Society at Florida State University is providing to be a big success. The Society, which was initiated five years ago and is under the advisement of the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, has developed into a thriving organization.

The Oscar Arias Sanchez Hispanic Honor Society was formed in the fall of 1992 to recognize academic excellence among students of Hispanic heritage. it is a scholastic and leadership society that promotes participation in other campus honor societies, and works with charitable organizations serving Tallahassee and neighboring Florida communities. For example, the Society works in cooperation with the W.E.//b. Dubois Honor Society, a similar organization which merits academic achievement in the African-American student community. In addition, our organization has consistently participated in service project sponsored by university and local service agencies such as the Fourth Avenue Cultural Enrichment Center, Habitat for Humanity and the Florida State University Center for Civic Education.

Membership into the Oscar Arias Sanchez Hispanic Honor Society is granted to those sophomores, juniors and transfer students of Hispanic heritage

Alejandro Perez

who have attained a 3.0 grade point average or higher, and who have fulfilled service project requirements. A member must attend a minimum of three meetings per semester. Every member is required to earn at least 14 points per consecutive semester in order to remain an active member. Points are earned by participating in a variety of events that include community service projects, seminars and social events.

To receive a membership pin, one must earn 17 points per semester. A formal induction ceremony is conducted every year during the spring semester. To be inducted, a member must earn 20 points per consecutive semester. At the time of induction, the inductee is awarded a graduation stole which can be worn at graduation.

I transferred to Florida State University last year for Florida Atlantic University. I am a senior with a dual major in multinational business and marketing, scheduled to graduate in the spring. At the time I transferred,I did not know that a Hispanic Honor Society existed until I arrived at the campus. I immediately became involved with the groups and began participating in its events. After two semesters and earning my points for induction, I was nominated for presidency and was elected.

 "Being a member of the Society and participating in its projects has given me leadership skills that I lacked. Unfortunately, the Oscar Arias Sanchez Hispanic Honor Society is by itself in Florida.

Hispanic honor societies are not common, which I believe is a detriment to Hispanic university students everywhere. This is a great organization that every university should adopt and promote."

If you would like to become a member of our organization, start a chapter at your institution or would like to receive more information, please contact Florida State University's Hispanic/Latino Student Affairs office at (850) 644-7827, dean of Undergraduate Studies at (850) 644-2740 or Minority Academic Programs office at (850) 644-0778.


Alejandro Perez is a senior and president of the Oscar Arias Sanchez Hispanic Honor Society at Florida State University.

Taken from: Perez, A. (1998, January). A Thriving Hispanic Honor Society At Florida State University. In The Voice of Hispanic Higher Education. Vol.7, No 1. p. 6