From left, 2014-2015 San Jacinto College PTK chapter presidents include Matthew Hunter (South Campus), Isabelle Carlin (Central Campus), and Vanessa Gonzalez (North Campus). Photo credit: Rob Vanya, San Jacinto College marketing, public relations, and government affairs department.


The 2014-2015 academic year was busy and productive for San Jacinto College Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) honor society chapters. PTK students on all three San Jacinto College campuses earned recognitions for achievements and community service.

PTK is an international honor society with core values of scholarship, leadership, service, and fellowship. To qualify, students must earn a cumulative 3.5 grade point average after completing 12 college hours. At San Jacinto College, PTK members attend bi-weekly meetings, participate in community and on-campus service learning projects, and attend local, regional, and international conferences.

It was a banner year for the North Campus PTK chapter, according to chapter faculty advisor Cody Pogue, who teaches government at the North Campus. The chapter earned a coveted 5 Star ranking, which is based on meeting high standards over a one-year period and is the highest possible level. Students Gary Alston and Vanessa Gonzalez earned 5 Star Member rankings based on academic achievements and exceptional service. The North Campus chapter was also selected as the district Vice Presidential chapter, meaning that a designated student from the chapter will represent all Houston area community colleges in key PTK state meetings during the 2015-2016 academic year. Additionally, Pogue earned a Paragon Award and was inducted into the Texas PTK Advisors’ Hall of Honor, based on “significant contributions to the growth of individual chapter members.”

The Central Campus PTK chapter also earned a 5 Star ranking based on meeting high standards and exceptional service. PTK member Amanda Chavez earned a Competitive Edge 3 Star award, based on achievements in leadership, networking, goal setting, and critical thinking. Chapter vice president Marina Schneider earned an Emerging Leader award, and will serve as the Central Campus PTK president during the 2015-2016 academic year. Another highlight was a successful PTK-sponsored campus-wide “commit-to-pledge” activity. The Central Campus chapter obtained a record 1,436 student pledges to complete college credentials during the Fall and Spring semester.

The South Campus PTK chapter also earned a 5 Star ranking, based on an excellent Honors in Action project and other criteria. PTK members Billy McVey, Hien Nguyen, and Erfan Rahman were inducted into the District IV Hall of Honor, based on achievements and service. Rahman and Nguyen, along with Damien Tello, earned Competitive Edge 5 Star awards. South Campus PTK members won several awards at the Texas Regionals boot decorating contest. At the international conference, South Campus PTK member Gabriel Martinez was named a PTK Honor Society Coca-Cola Leader of Promise Scholar based on positive characteristics and academic achievements.

Martinez, who is pursuing a medical career, says involvement in PTK has enriched his collegiate experience. “PTK has allowed me to get my foot in the door and helped me understand the benefits of student organizations,” he commented. “Colleges and universities want to see that you have the social skills and professionalism to be a part of their programs. Organizations like PTK help you build on those skills, but it also lets you be part of a community of great people. PTK is one of the best investments you can make in your educational and professional future.”

Students who join PTK have special seals placed on their diplomas and transcripts, which can lead to scholarship offers. Qualifying students can join PTK chapters and participate in numerous academic endeavors, networking, and community service activities at all three San Jacinto College campuses.

In related news, during the 2014-2015 academic year, a San Jacinto College top administrator earned recognition for supporting PTK. Dr. Laurel Williamson, deputy chancellor and president of the College, earned the PTK Shirley B. Gordon award based on her efforts to promote the goals of the honor society.

About San Jacinto College

Surrounded by monuments of history, industries and maritime enterprises of today, and the space age of tomorrow, San Jacinto College has been serving the citizens of East Harris County, Texas, for more than 50 years. As an Achieving the Dream Leader College, San Jacinto College is committed to the goals and aspirations of a diverse population of approximately 30,000 credit students. The College offers 186 degrees and certificates, with 46 technical programs and a university transfer division. Students benefit from a support system that maps out a pathway for success, and job training programs that are renowned for meeting the needs of growing industries in the region. San Jacinto College graduates contribute nearly $690 million each year to the Texas workforce.

For more information about San Jacinto College, please call 281-998-6150, visit, or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.