Phi Kappa Phi Honors Cortland Excellence
More than 1.5 million students have pursued excellence in education as part of the National Interdisciplinary Collegiate Honor Society Phi Kappa Phi.
This year, four of those SUNY Cortland members received honors that set them apart, even among their peers.
Kathryn Hofmann received the university’s Irmgard Mechlenburg Taylor Prize, while Cynthia Briggs, Matthew Milano and Anthony Scibelli were selected as Fellows of the Year.
“Phi Kappa Phi began in 1897 with 10 senior students at the University of Maine,” said Chris Widdall, SUNY Cortland Phi Kappa Phi chapter secretary. “For more than 125 years, Phi Kappa Phi has supported students with its motto, ‘Let the love of learning reign over mankind. We hope to continue this mission by beginning a regeneration of SUNY Cortland Phi Kappa Phi to once again become an active group focused on service to our community.
The Irmgard Mechlenburg Taylor Prize is named after Irmgard Taylor, Emeritus Professor of International Communication and Culture (German). Taylor was a longtime member of the Modern Languages Department and a founding member of the SUNY Cortland Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi.
The endowment provides a $750 scholarship to be used for one undergraduate semester and is awarded to a student in the School of Arts and Sciences who has achieved the highest grade point average among active honor society members .
The scholarship recipients of the year are selected from Phi Kappa Phi members who submit a student application. The app highlights the student’s service to others, academic strength, and accomplishments that have enriched the lives of others. Recipients receive a $100 reward. An induction ceremony was not held in the spring of 2022 due to COVID precautions.
A Phi Kappa Phi A member since 2021 and graduating next spring, Hofmann is a sociology major from Oxford, NY, with a minor in psychology and a concentration in criminology.
A senior inclusive childhood education major from Hawthorne, NY, who plans to graduate in December, Briggs’ plans include completing a master’s degree program and becoming an elementary educator.
Milano, of Miller Place, NY, is a physical education major with a concentration in Adapted Physical Education who also hopes to graduate at the end of this semester. He plans to complete a master’s program at SUNY Cortland to teach children with disabilities.
A physical education graduate from Plainview, NY, Scibelli aspires to complete an MBA at Ohio University. He then plans to teach physical education and, in the long term, could pursue an administrative role in health and physical education, athletics, or the K-12 system.
Phi Kappa Phi, as an interdisciplinary society, invites members from all recognized branches of academic endeavour, seeking to reward excellence wherever it can be identified. The honors organization offers more than $1 million in awards and grants each year. Membership is by invitation to top juniors, seniors and graduate students who meet specific criteria eligibility criteria on member campuses.
The SUNY Cortland Phi Kappa Phi Chapter specifies certain conditions for the election of candidates for membership. Students must be of good character and represent a maximum of 10% of the senior class, no more than seven and a half percent of the junior class, and a maximum of 10% of graduate students graduating during the year. Faculty members are limited to four per year. The group allows no more than one honorary member per year, with the prior approval of the society’s national board of directors.