Since its inception in 1981 with advisor Mr. William Ludwig there has been a National Honor Society (NHS) at Erie High School (EHS). This fall marks the 38th year that members have been asked to join the organization. Students in the sophomore, junior, or senior classes that have a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or higher are issued an invitation to start the application process starting with a packet of information. Within the application packet, students are asked to list what experiences they have in leadership positions, service to the school and community, and finally any paid or voluntary work experience they have. Leadership does not mean that you have to be a class officer or the captain of a team. Leadership examples are noted within the hallways, classroom, and even at lunch time. There are effects from good leadership and bad leadership and understanding the differences is important. A personal philosophy statement is also written.
Once the packet is returned to advisor, Mrs. Proeger, the faculty then reviews each applicant to discuss the packet and any character traits of the student. The students are then either accepted to receive the final invitation to join NHS or to receive a letter highlighting what changes should be made to perhaps become more involved within the school or community. Once a student accepts the final invitation to join the 583 students who said yes to become members since the organizations start in 1981.
This chapter prides itself on the amount of service we provide to the school and community. A variety of projects have been done over the years which included hosting blood drives, gathering winter wear for the homeless, assembling Operation Shoeboxes for Samaritan's Purse, and collecting food and hygiene items for our local food pantry. Members painted some of the dug outs for the ball association, and are working on a project for the Mercy Hospice Health Care group. We have also participated in a pajama drive campaign to give children new pajamas and a book at Christmas time. We hosted the community egg gathering in conjunction with the Erie Fireflies for a number of years, and held fundraisers with the profits donated to a variety of organizations such as St. Jude's, Ronald McDonald, My G.E.A.R., the University of Iowa Stead Family Hospital and a lot of others. Members go Christmas caroling at local nursing homes and Winning Wheels, and have stayed on to play games at a nursing home with the residents. The projects are all chosen by the members and worked on as a group. If anyone in the community has an idea for a service project, the members would love to hear it to see if it is possible for our group to help.
This year the induction will be held before members, friends, and family on Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. in the commons of EHS with a reception to follow.