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MCCC Student Leaders Host Phi Theta Kappa Middle States Region Leadership and Honors Institute

7/26/18


Mercer's PTK leaders, from left, Charles Dubell, Thomas Lillja, Lina Garcia, Simone Beukes, Gina Migliaccio (co-advisor), and Victoria Fredrick served in leadership roles during the conference. (This photo, taken by MCCC's PTK Co-advisor, Jingrong Huang, was the winner of the PTK photo contest and is featured on the PTK International Honor Society website.)

As the host chapter for this year’s Middle States Region Leadership and Honors Institute, held at Rider University, Mercer's Alpha Theta Gamma chapter was honored at the opening ceremony. At far right is MCCC President Jianping Wang, who addressed the estimated 400 attendees from 30 PTK chapters.

West Windsor, N.J. – The officers and members of Alpha Theta Gamma (ATG), the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) chapter of Mercer County Community College (MCCC), took on a major leadership role as hosts of this year’s Middle States Region Leadership and Honors Institute, held at Rider University June 28 to July 1.

“The Mercer chapter impressed the entire Middle States Regional Leadership Team, and represented the college with dignity and professionalism,” PTK Co-advisor Gina Migliaccio said. Participating PTK students from Mercer included Christopher Batty, Simone Beukes, Charles Dubell, Maria Fayyaz, Victoria Fredrick Lina Garcia, Zehra Kazi, and Thomas Lillja.

According to Migliaccio, representatives from more than 30 PTK chapters attended the four-day conference. Among the 400 participants were PTK officers, current members and alumni, as well as Middle States Regional advisors and coordinators.

MCCC President Jianping Wang welcomed the group on June 28. She was followed by Jennifer Cook, Rider University’s senior transfer director and former MCCC Alpha Theta Gamma chapter advisor.

Cook and Migliaccio presented the theme for the Institute: “Change vs. Transformation: Creating Your Change Vision.” Topics of forums and seminars included “Honors in Action Basics,” “Action Research Analytics,” “5-Star Chapter Development,” “Strategic Leadership,” “Acting and Serving,” and “Assessment and Reflection.”

As the event hosts, MCCC students had a chance to put their leadership skills into action. The students served as guides around the Rider campus, and helped to orient out-of-towners to local eateries for their evening meals, thanks to a list created by Vice President of Scholarship Victoria Fredrick, an MCCC Nursing student. ATG Co-advisor Jingrong Huang, MCCC Professor of Physics, replenished snacks for the assembly throughout the event.

During the closing ceremony, ATG President Simone Beukes and Vice President of Service Charles Dubell led a trivia game about lessons learned during the Institute. The game, called “Kahoot,” was designed by Vice President of Fellowship Sean Bohan. The game included questions on the PTK Honors in Action program guide, the keynote speech, presentations and the Middle States region. MCCC Dean for Business and STEM Winston Maddox sponsored prizes of Starbucks gift cards that were awarded to the highest scorers.

Migliaccio reports that Mercer’s ATG chapter truly rose to the occasion. “I saw a change in the mindset of our students as a result of this Institute,” she said. “They have gained a passion for developing leadership skills, for expanding higher-level thinking, and for conducting action research that is specific, measurable, attainable, and relevant. They have developed all the necessary skills for creating and leading successful chapter events in accordance with PTK program guidelines.”

Migliaccio predicts that the coming academic year will be stellar for PTK at Mercer. “We should be proud to have such a determined team of students leading the way in scholarship, leadership, service, and fellowship," she said.

The Alpha Theta Gamma chapter extends its gratitude to Mercer’s Student Life and Leadership office for their support of Mercer's participation in the conference.

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