The Eta Gamma Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa at Coffeyville Community College was named Most Distinguished Chapter in the Kansas/Nebraska Region at the Society's annual convention March 2-4 at the Cornhusker Hotel, Lincoln, Nebraska. The event celebrated Phi Theta Kappa's century of fellowship. The event began Friday with convention registration followed by the first general session sponsored by Kansas State University. The session featured the chapter cheer/chant song competition and Honors in Action Project wrap up. International Headquarters up-date was presented by international president Amanda Karpinski. Regional officer candidate nominations were also presented.
Following dinner in the Arbor Room, the second general session sponsored by the Nebraska Wesleyan University was presented by Dr. Mitch Stimers who addressed "Introduction to the Honors in Action Project." Dr. Stimers is the Chief Information Officer and Instructor of Geography and Geoscience at Cloud County Community College. Evening found the PTK members participating in a regional officer political rally. Eta Gamma officer, Rebekah Morris, was a candidate for Vice President of Eastern Kansas.
General session three was presided by Eta Gamma President Kenny Dodson and sponsored by Peru State College. The session featured break-out sessions on the region's St. Jude's 2018 trip, Competitive Edge Workshop, Packing the Perfect Profession for your Personality and PTK 101 and More. Break-out session 2 addressed ways to stay involved as alumni, Five Star Chapter Plan, College Project, Honors in Action Project and Recruiting New Members.
General Session 4 was sponsored by Net Impact and featured a keynote address, "I AM PTK" by the international president. The convention's service project was a meal packing event for Chapter 25, Lincoln Kids Against Hunger. Following dinner in the Renaissance Room, the regional awards ceremony sponsored by Chadron State College was held. Installation of new region officers, including Rebekah Morris, and a dance concluded the evening's activities.
The convention concluded March 4 with motivational speaker Kevin Kush who addressed "A Piece of the Puzzle...Eight Traits of a Quality Teammate." Kush has been involved in coaching and teaching for over 30 years and spent 21 of those years working with at-risk youth at Boys Town in Omaha, Nebraska.
In addition to being named Most Distinguished Chapter, the Eta Gamma Chapter received the following recognitions:
- Five Star Competitive Edge - Brylee Brasker, Rebekah Morris, Jaycee Meek, Katelyn Perkins, Liz Ortiz, and Harlene Alford.
- Distinguished Member Award, Adrian Ensaldo, 3rd Place.
- Five Star Chapter Plan - Eta Gamma.
- Achievement in Art - Ceramics/Sculpture- Steven Coward, 2nd Place.
- Sister Chapter Award with Beta Omega - 3rd Place.
- Honors in Action Award - 5th Place.
- Distinguished Chapter Officer Team, Kenny Dodson, Ja'Mour Allison, Kendall Blaich, Harlene Alford, Brylee Brasher, Ajanea Gunby, Liz Ortiz, Katelynn Shearhart, Rebekah Morris, Nathan Wells, and Tyler Smith.
- Most Distinguished Chapter Officer - Kenny Dodson, 1st Place and Brylee Brasher, 4th Place.
- Great Idea Award, 1st Place and College Project, 2nd Place.
- Adviser Linda McFate received a plaque for 25 years of service to the region as well as having the Continued Excellence for Advisers' Award named in her honor.
Rebekah Morris was selected by the attendees to serve as their region Vice President of Eastern Kansas. In this capacity, she will have the opportunity to attend International Honors Institute at Villanova University in Pennsylvania in June. This event is referred to as the "Crown Jewel" of Phi Theta Kappa.
Eta Gamma delegates attending the convention were: Ja'Mour Allison, Marissa Beckstrom, Brylee Brasher, Kenny Dodson, Adrian Ensaldo, Chelsi Maples, Bekah Morris, Sayo Niiyama, McKenna Kapocsi, Dillan Van Rensburg, Daniela Santos, Caitlynn Stevenson, and Nathan Wells.
Alumni members assisting with the convention were: Jesus Medina, Wes Merritt, Melissa Loibl, and Pam Howe. The chapter will also take part in the international convention April 18-22 in Kansas City, Missouri.