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UM Lambda Sigma Honor Society Recognized for Giving Back

A group of Lambda Sigma members volunteer at the Ole Miss Food Bank as part of a yearlong service initiative that resulted in the UM honor society being awarded honor chapter status at a recent national conference. Submitted photo

An exceptional partnership with the University of Mississippi Food Bank focused on making a difference in the community has led to an Ole Miss honor society winning a national award.

The Ole Miss Lambda Sigma’s Iota chapter received Honor Chapter status Sept. 20 at the honor society’s National President’s Leadership Conference in Atlanta. The organization is a national service-and leadership-based honor society for college sophomores. Its mission is to give back to the community.

The recognition is given to chapters that demonstrate a strong commitment to service, which is exactly what the Ole Miss Iota chapter has accomplished, thanks to last year’s chapter president, Cade Slaughter.

Ryan Upshaw, assistant dean in the School of Engineering who also serves as the chapter’s faculty adviser, said he is proud of Slaughter’s “natural-born leadership” skills and applauded the chapter members for all their efforts.

“It means a great deal to see the chapter recognized for all of their work,” Upshaw said. “It was even better to be able to watch the group be recognized in person at the conference.” 

The UM chapter of Lambda Sigma, which accepts 50 members each year, is part of the national honor society focused on fostering leadership, scholarship, fellowship and service. Outstanding sophomores with a GPA of a 3.5 and above have an opportunity to apply to become a member and go through an interview process conducted by previous year members.

Olivia Jordan, a sophomore public policy leadership major from Grove Hill, Alabama, is the new chapter president, and she accepted the award on the chapter’s behalf. She said the Honor Chapter distinction “definitely pushes” this year’s members to strive for that same level of accomplishment and commitment to give back to the Oxford community.

Jordan said she applied to Lambda Sigma because service projects have always been important to her throughout her educational career. Getting involved in the community as chapter president has become one of Jordan’s favorite college experiences so far. 

“I aim to make a difference through the chapter to show that community service doesn’t stop when we get to college,” Jordan said. 

Tori Starks, a sophomore biology major from Paris, Tennessee, serves as Lambda Sigma service co-chair. She helped the group form its partnership with the food bank because she wants to serve as a reminder that good can be done anywhere.

“At Ole Miss, we’ve formed a community, and our work with the food bank is aimed toward giving back to the place and the people who have done so much for us,” Starks said.

Jordan has planned several seasonal projects, drives and volunteer events to meet the chapter’s mission of helping at-risk youth. Looking forward to the holiday season, Jordan has planned for the chapter to throw on their favorite Christmas sweaters and go caroling to nursing homes throughout the Oxford community before semester’s end.

They group also is working on a new partnership with Toys for Tots for the 2019 holiday season. 

“I always try to get creative with our service projects so we can have a good time as a chapter with our community,” Jordan said.

By Tristen Bloxsom

Adam Brown
Adam Brown
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