Students discuss the value of NHS

Vivian Chan, Staff Writer

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Every year, juniors and seniors ponder for themselves whether or not to join Eleanor Roosevelt High School’s National Honor Society. To help those currently weighing the pros and cons, three individuals with different and unique perspectives offered their reflections on their experience to answer the question: Is NHS worth it?

The participants were: Ms. Lisa Yearwood, the club sponsor, Taylor Beverly, the NHS president, and an anonymous Ex-NHS member. The last interviewee did not think their experience was worth it and wanted to remain anonymous due to fear of criticism and judgement from teachers and students.

1.What are the pros or cons of joining NHS?

Ms. Yearwood: The pros are opportunities for leadership roles and the creation of new initiatives within the organization… Members who enjoy actively participating inside and outside of the school will have various opportunities to do so, thereby putting themselves in a position to get to know faculty and community leaders, which may lead to networking possibilities…The cons are that students who do not enjoy volunteering, or have numerous additional obligations will find the volunteer hour requirements hard to meet.

Taylor Beverly: Being a part of NHS and specifically having a leadership role kind of makes you more noticed by administration which is an advantage and while being a part of the society you have some motivation to continue to do well in school and be great role models. It forces you to prioritize your time as well since you have so many requirements to finish.

Ex-NHS Member: The cons outweigh the pros for me due to the fact that I have priorities that I would much rather do than to do all the petty requirements of NHS.

2.Do you think the time and commitment required of NHS is “worth it” for students? *To the students: Why was joining NHS “worth it/not worth the effort” for you? Why?

Ms. Yearwood: Whether or not it is “worth it” is up to the individual. If you use your membership wisely…then yes, it will definately be  “worth it.” There are a number of former NHS members currently serving on the PG County School Board who had leadership positions in NHS where they gained experience working with others and learning how to motivate their peers in various ways. However, if your parents are making you do it and every requirement is painful for you, then it is not “worth it.”

Taylor Beverly: I believe it was worth it since I finally directly impacted my school by being able to tutor those in need and donate my time to teachers.

Ex-NHS Member: Personally, I didn’t find NHS worth it because it takes up a lot of my time that I need to focus on other things, such as college applications and extra curricular activities. It required me to do a lot of services that my time couldn’t allow. This school’s NHS is kind of chaotic and messy so it’s difficult to organize events and stuff. I enjoyed several parts of it and I enjoyed meeting with several people I’ve never really spoke to before, and our committee was very fun. For me, even though we were required to tutor, I never found myself helping anyone, and I just sat there waiting for one person to ask for help in a field I can help in, but it never worked…

3. Advice for those deciding whether they should join or not?/What kind of students should join?

Ms. Yearwood: The only advice I’d give to students deciding whether to join is, is this something you want…, or is this something your parents want? If you do not want to do it, it is likely you will not keep up with the requirements and may be expelled from the organization.

Taylor Beverly: I believe people should strive to be apart of NHS because in a way, at least for me, it kind of confirmed that putting in the work for great grades does pay off and is recognized by others…Those who are serious about reaching out to lower classmen and willing to donate their time instead of just joining for the application boost and the graduation wrap.

Ex-NHS Member: I truly do think that NHS could be an effective organization if they are passionate about everything NHS is about, but most of the people I meet on this organization don’t and we all agree that it’s just for college applications and for that extra decoration for graduation. If you have a lot of free time and passion for everything about NHS then go for it. I advise them to not just join because everyone else is. The kind of students that deserve to be in NHS are people who truly feel like they need extra work with little to no rewards, except a bib for graduations and personal accomplishments.

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