Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society, offers opportunities for Western students to join a community centered around English studies. Sigma Tau Delta members at WMU participate in professional, service, and social activities, and share their writing through conference presentations, publication opportunities, and workshops.
Members of Sigma Tau Delta are eligible to compete for national scholarships, awards, and internships. Many leadership, service, academic, and professional opportunities are available as well.
Sigma Tau Delta members are also recognized for their academic achievements. Upon graduation, members are recognized as honor students in the WMU commencement ceremony program and entitled to wear honor cords indicating their status as honor society members. (Your parents will love this!)
Alpha Nu Pi Chapter
The Alpha Nu Pi chapter of Sigma Tau Delta brings together a diverse group of students and faculty who share an affinity for English studies. Our members are engaged in all aspects of English studies, including the study of the English language and linguistics, literature, creative writing, rhetoric and professional writing, English education, critical theory, and more.
The Alpha Nu Pi chapter of Sigma Tau Delta was chartered in December 2005. Thirty-one students and two faculty members signed our petition for charter, which was accompanied by a letter of support from WMU then-president, Judith Bailey. Dr. Arnie Johnston, who chaired the English department until his retirement in 2007, generously provided funding for our application fee.
Making Our Mark
The Alpha Nu Pi chapter has been very active on the WMU campus and beyond. We established the WMU English Studies Conference in 2007 and have made this a WMU tradition, providing a venue for students to present their original scholarly and creative work to an audience of like-minded students and faculty each fall and spring semester.
WMU has also sent a delegation to the Sigma Tau Delta International Convention every year since our charter was granted. Three of our own represented us at the 2006 convention, in Portland, Oregon, just weeks after our first induction ceremony. In 2007, a delegation of 10 Sigma Tau Deltas from WMU presented their work at the convention in Pittsburgh, and in 2008, 10 Alpha Nu Pi students and one alumnus represented us in Louisville, where Jennifer Dempsey, then a WMU senior (and now a graduate student at the University of Maryland) won first prize for poetry, after having placed third in 2007.
Four members of Alpha Nu Pi presented their work at the convention in Minneapolis in March 2009, and an impressive delegation of chapter members accompanied them to the convention to represent WMU and cheer on the presenters.
At the 2009 convention, our own Helena Witzke was elected Associate Student Representative for the Midwest Region, making Helena, a February 2009 inductee, the first such office holder for our chapter. At the same time, Daniel Kenzie, 2008-09 chapter president, was busy nabbing third prize for Best World Lit, British Lit, or Critical Theory Essay.
Four members were chosen to present their work at the 2011 convention in Pittsburgh. President Katie O’Brien also received the Student Leadership Award.
For the third time in only our five years of existence, Alpha Nu Pi was invited to participate in the Outstanding Chapter exhibition at the 2011 Pittsburgh convention and recognized again by the parent organization as one of the “most active, vital chapters in the country.”
1. Confer distinction for high academic achievement.
2. Promote interest in English studies on the WMU campus and in the surrounding community.
3. Foster all the disciplines that comprise English studies.
4. Promote exemplary character and good fellowship among our members.
5. Exhibit high standards of academic excellence.
6. Serve the community by fostering literacy.
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