Phi Kappa Phi Chapter Earns Honor Society’s Excellence Award
UT Dallas President David E. Daniel (left) and associate vice president for research Rafael Martín (right) extended Phi Kappa Phi invitations to a group of undergraduates last fall. The chapter extended more than 400 invitations last semester.
For the third year, Phi Kappa Phi has recognized The University of Texas at Dallas chapter as a Chapter of Excellence, the highest commendation a chapter can receive from the organization.
The UT Dallas chapter is among 29 across the U.S. to receive the top award, given for outstanding performance of volunteer chapter officers. Other Texas institutions recognized were Texas Woman’s University and UT San Antonio.
“It’s very gratifying that UT Dallas has received this recognition every year since we initiated our Phi Kappa Phi chapter,” said Dr. Hobson Wildenthal, executive vice president and provost. “This affirms the University’s commitment to promoting academic excellence in our faculty, staff and students.”
Rafael Martín, associate vice president for research and president of the UT Dallas chapter of Phi Kappa Phi, credited the solid foundation created by the chapter’s founding president, Dr. Denise Paquette Boots.
“Denise did a great job setting the base for the chapter and putting in place a structure that allows us to operate on a high level,” Martín said. “My job has simply been to try to maintain the high standards which she and the society have set.”
“It’s very gratifying that UT Dallas has received this recognition every year since we initiated our Phi Kappa Phi chapter. This affirms the University’s commitment to promoting academic excellence in our faculty, staff and students.”
The UT Dallas chapter, established in 2011, was recognized again as a thriving organization that holds annual initiations, maintains an active social media presence, offers multiple nominees for national and local fellowships and awards, and sponsors events — including an annual luncheon and the Honors Convocation.
The ongoing support of President David E. Daniel and Wildenthal has been critical to “ensure a robust presence on campus” for the chapter, Martín said.
Martín also singled out the efforts of chapter executive committee member Dr. Douglas Dow, associate dean for the Honors College, for managing the chapter’s Cantrell Academic Travel Grants and for the success rate of students applying for the national Phi Kappa Phi Fellowships.
The chapter added 134 new inductees in 2014, and now has inducted 838 members since its inception.
UT Dallas faculty and staff take on rotating leadership roles for the chapter. In January, Dr. Andrew Blanchard, dean of Undergraduate Education and Mary McDermott Cook Distinguished Chair for Undergraduate Education and Research, began a two-year term as chapter president.
Phi Kappa Phi is the country’s oldest, largest and most selective honor society that serves all academic disciplines, with chapters on more than 300 campuses in the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Philippines.
Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].