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Why should someone join NSCS?

First and foremost, NSCS provides outstanding first- and second-year college students with recognition for their academic excellence.  In addition to this recognition, NSCS provides opportunities for members to develop leadership skills, connect with their communities, and further their education.  These include:

  •  Scholarships: NSCS annually distributes more than $250,000 in scholarships for everything from books to study abroad and graduate school. (See Scholarship and Special Offers & Discounts link for a full list).  Upon joining, you are immediately eligible to apply for the $1000 Merit Award scholarship, which is exclusively for new members.
  •  Access to employers, graduate schools and networking opportunities: Our online career center connects recruiters from top employers and graduate schools with members who are ideal candidates for their specific programs.  The annual NSCS Convention lets members network directly with representatives from these employers and institutions.
  • Leadership opportunities: Build your leadership skills by becoming a chapter officer. The NSCS national office in Washington, D.C. works directly with officers to help them become effective leaders. You can also apply for the National Leadership Council (NLC), a panel which serves as the voice of the NSCS membership.
  • Community service opportunities: NSCS chapters are active in their communities in many different ways. Each chapter is required to participate in the signature NSCS service initiative Planning to Achieve College Excellence, or PACE, where members mentor K-12 students and encourage them to attend college. Another PACE component is March to College Day, when NSCS chapters bring students on to campus to experience the life of a college student.
  • Make new friends on campus and beyond: Attend chapter meetings and events, and build friendships with your fellow chapter members. (Make sure you say hello and shout out your school on the NSCS Facebook page at facebook.com/nscs94). Also, attend national events such as the 2011 NSCS Convention in Puerto Rico and meet other NSCS members from across the nation!


How is NSCS different from other organizations on campus?

NSCS recognizes that a college campus provides many opportunities for students to become involved. NSCS is an organization that recognizes students who excel academically during the most difficult period of transitioning from high school to college. Once someone is a member, NSCS provides opportunities, such as those mentioned above, to become involved and make a difference.

How involved do i have to be?

NSCS respects that members tend to be highly motivated and active in their communities, and therefore membership does not carry a minimum time commitment. As with anything, your NSCS experience will be what you make of it, and your level of involvement will directly correlate to how much you get out of your NSCS membership. NSCS provides the opportunity to get involved in your chapter, your campus, and your community, but the rest is up to you. 

How does NSCS use the $95 membership fee?

Your $95 fee covers the cost of your membership diploma, pin, the Induction Convocation on your campus, your campus chapter’s funds, scholarships, national programs, the online Career Center, and NSCS administrative costs. 

NSCS is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies and is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization; all income goes to develop and operate the Society. A copy of the annual report can be found on the national website at www.NSCS.org.

What happens when I join?

Once you join NSCS, you will receive an e-mail confirming your membership and verifying the spelling of your name for your diploma. You will then begin receiving chapter e-mails, have access to the NSCS website, and be eligible for all NSCS resources and benefits. Your name will also be sent to your chapter’s officers, so you are included in the Induction Convocation and kept informed about upcoming events on your campus. 

You can expect to receive your diploma six to eight weeks after your membership is processed. The diploma packet will also include a press release announcing your admission to NSCS for you to send to your local newspaper for publication.


How do members know NSCS received their membership confirmation?

Members can join online to receive immediate confirmation or within 1-2 weeks if joining by mail. Once registration is processed, members will receive an e-mail confirming their membership. New members will receive their diploma and a press release about their membership in 6-8 weeks. The press release is a formal announcement of membership and we encourage students to distribute the release to their campus and local newspapers. Included with the release are instructions for distribution.


What is the Induction Convocation?

The Induction Convocation is a ceremony held by your school’s chapter, where new members are formally recognized and inducted into the Society. The Induction is often attended by a representative from the NSCS national office, and has a keynote speaker from the university or local community. Family and guests are invited to attend the ceremony, which usually lasts for an hour.  Dress is business casual.


Can members include NSCS on their resumes? Is this something people are going to recognize?

Yes, we encourage members to list their membership on their resume. NSCS has a nationwide network of universities, corporate partners, national associations, and alumni members.  A comprehensive list can be found on the NSCS website.  NSCS is well recognized among these and many other companies and institutions.


How many chapters are there?

Currently, NSCS has chapters at 280 colleges and universities nationwide, including the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico.  NSCS is continually working to charter chapters on additional campuses, providing more students with the opportunity to be a part of the Society.


Who is eligible to join NSCS?  How many students from each school are invited?

Only first- and second-year college students who rank in the top 20th percent of their class and have a minimum GPA of 3.4 are invited to join.  Names of eligible students are provided to the national office by the school registrar in accordance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).  NSCS does not sell or redistribute student information, nor does NSCS have any records of a student’s actual GPA (unless self confirmed by members for purposes of scholarship opportunities).  The Board of Directors establishes the criteria for membership based on the standard set by the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), of which NSCS has been a member since 2004. 

The number of students varies at each school. Eligibility requirements are consistent for all chapters, and as such, the number of students invited varies among college campuses. 


What is the Merit Award Scholarship?

Each year NSCS presents the Merit Award to 52 outstanding new members across the United States. This prestigious award is a $1,000 scholarship to help defray the costs of education. Merit Award recipients are selected based on how they exemplify the three pillars of the Society: Scholarship, Leadership and Service. New members who are interested in applying must do so online by July 31. The application consists of short essay questions and recommendations.


Is NSCS a legitimate organization?

Yes. NSCS is a highly selective, 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization. NSCS is a member of The Association of College Honor Societies and is a recognized organization on campuses across the country, with new chapters being added each year.


Who runs NSCS?

The Board of Directors oversees NSCS’ policy direction and fiscal efficiency. The Board includes educators and business professionals. Two student members are also present on the Board: the president and vice president of the National Leadership Council -- a group of undergraduate NSCS members who work to support and improve the Society. The NLC president serves as a voting Board member. 


How does the national office help my chapter?

NSCS has a full-time staff based in Washington, D.C. that works to support the campus chapters. Staff members have significant higher education experience and are committed to helping chapter officers and members make the most of their membership.

The staff includes managers who are in constant contact with chapter officers, to ensure that they have all necessary resources to engage their members.  Members can also interact with the staff via e-mail or phone, or in person during the annual Convention. You are always encouraged and welcomed to stop by the national office in Washington, D.C. if you are in the area. 


Does the school know about this? Why are all the contacts students?

NSCS is an officially recognized on-campus organization.  Each chapter is run by students and has a faculty member or administrator who advises them and provides support on campus.  NSCS may be a new organization on campus so some students and staff may not be familiar with it yet.


I’m transferring to a different school.  Will my membership still be valid?

If your new school has an NSCS chapter, your membership can be transferred to that chapter.  If they don’t have a chapter, you’re still eligible for all the NSCS national benefits and encouraged to contact the national office for details about starting a new chapter!


How do I get in touch with NSCS Headquarters?

On the Web: www.nscs.org


Phone: 800.989.6727

Fax: 202.265.9200

E-mail: nscs@nscs.org


Contact information for your chapter’s officers is listed on the Spring 2012 Officers Page.