Frequently Asked Questions

What is Golden Key?

Golden Key is the world’s largest international collegiate honour society. We recognize sophomores, juniors, seniors and graduate students in the top 15% of their class across all majors and disciplines in 8 countries. With more than 400 university chapters and 2 million lifetime members worldwide, Golden Key is a network of outstanding scholars. Golden Key provides our members with opportunities to grow and develop through events & activities based on our three pillars of academics, leadership and service.

Who is eligible to join Golden Key?

Second year university students in the top 15% of their class as well as top performing graduate students in all academic majors are eligible to join Golden Key across the world.

How is Golden Key different from other honour societies?

  • Golden Key extends membership to scholars in all academic disciplines.
  • Golden Key is the world’s largest international honour society and even hosts Society events both in the US and abroad.
  • Golden Key offers $1 million in scholarships and awards to members each year.
  • Most honour societies charge annual local dues. GK membership is a one-time fee and members can enjoy the privileges of membership throughout their lifetime.
  • Unlike many honour societies, Golden Key is an active society on most campuses. If members choose to participate in the many opportunities on campus or at events around the world, they will get an incredible member experience. Participation is not required.
  • Golden Key invests heavily in our university chapters. Chapters receive generous financial funding to conduct activities, award local scholarships and make a difference on their campus and in their community.

What are the benefits of membership in Golden Key?

Golden Key provides academic recognition, $1 million in scholarships is offered each year to our members, there are exclusive discounts on programs and services through our partners, there are study abroad opportunities, and members can attend regional and international leadership conferences. At the chapter level, student members organize community service events and leadership development activities. Students have the option to get involved in the activities and/or gain leadership experience by becoming a chapter officer. Golden Key offers members a unique opportunity to network with fellow students who share their passion for learning. Golden Key membership begins with recognition of academic excellence and can lead to a lifetime of learning and achievement.

Benefits of Membership

  • Golden Key offers over $1 million dollars in scholarships each year.
  • Academic recognition: Members are invited to attend membership recognition ceremonies with university and academic officials, GK members and their families on university campuses throughout the world.
  • Access to graduate school opportunities: Relationships with grad schools that offer reduced or waived application fees. Virtual Graduate School Fairs are held twice a year (open to any members, free).
  • Study abroad and international travel opportunities: career development travel opportunities for business, medical and international business majors around the world including China, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States.
  • Networking opportunities:
    1. Network with members from over 400+ chapters throughout the world
    2. Belong to a group of 2 million academic achievers, accomplished university staff and faculty as well as esteemed business and civic leaders.
    3. GK Facebook page – 60,000+ likes
    4. GK LinkedIn group (members-only) – 30,000+ members
  • Leadership development: Opportunities for leadership growth and development in chapters throughout the world.
  • SPARK a Change & additional service opportunities: Members can take part in GK’s international service initiative to help impact and improve the lives of at-risk youth ages 0-17 through literacy, education and real world preparedness. Members perform more than 200,000 hours of community service each year.
  • International and Regional Summits: GK hosts regional and international events that help members develop both personally and professionally.

What do you do with GK membership fees?

Golden Key membership fees support all of the programmatic and benefit offerings for the Society, such as scholarships, new member recognition events, international and regional events, chapter and local events, etc. For every dollar collected in membership fees, Golden Key invests $1.29 into member benefits and programs. (The ability to give more than $1 for every dollar collected is due to the generosity of our corporate partners.)

What are the benefits of becoming a Golden Key

officer or volunteer?

One of the greatest ways to benefit from being a GK member is to volunteer or become an officer. GK offers many opportunities for members to assume leadership at the chapter level. Officers lead meetings and organize events, as well as work with other members on an individual basis. This experience (no matter what position held) is invaluable and helps members to add real world experience to their resumes as a part of their college experience. If you wish to explore opportunities as an officer or volunteer for Golden Key, you should contact your advisor, local GK president or Associate Director. You can also reach out at

How do I respond if someone asks if Golden Key is a scam?

Golden Key is not a scam. Golden Key International Honour Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with it’s international headquarters based in Atlanta, Georgia. Golden Key has over 400 chapters located at universities and colleges around the world that have faculty and administrative advisors, student leaders and honorary members of the academic and civic community. Golden Key members worldwide perform over 200,000 hours of community service just last year. Golden Key diligently works with universities to verify the eligibility of potential members to ensure that all meet the rigorous membership requirements.

Golden Key is audited annually and publishes an annual report as well as an annual scholarship report (both are found online at

With the help of generous corporate sponsors, GK invests $1.29 of every $1 of membership dues collected in our mission related programs such as new member recognition events, SPARK a Change service initiatives, leadership development in regional and international summits, our signature scholarship program, etc.