Feature Story

An Honored Society

September 22, 2015 – by Julia Stone ’16

Meghan Schulze ’16 (center) shows off Ohio Wesleyan’s Silver Torch Award received during the 2015 Mortar Board National Conference. Schulze is shown with students from Ohio University and Otterbein University. (Photo courtesy of Meghan Schulze ’16)

Ohio Wesleyan’s Mortar Board Earns National Award, Prepares for New Year

Meghan Schulze ’16 (center) shows off Ohio Wesleyan’s Silver Torch Award received during the 2015 Mortar Board National Conference. Schulze is shown with students from Ohio University and Otterbein University. (Photo courtesy of Meghan Schulze ’16)

Ohio Wesleyan University’s Mortar Board honor society is among the outstanding chapters earning a Silver Torch Award at the 2015 Mortar Board National Conference.

Mortar Board recognizes college seniors for outstanding achievement in scholarship, leadership and service. More than a quarter million members have been initiated at 231 chartered chapters across the nation since its founding in 1918.

Kelsey Gallaher ’15, OWU’s former Mortar Board president, says last year’s chapter was comprised of many dedicated individuals who embraced each other’s differences.

“Mortar Board helped me understand how to work with people in different group dynamics,” says Gallaher, a sociology-anthropology major. “I think that going forward, this experience will be useful in not only a professional setting, but also personal ones as well.”

Meghan Schulze ’16, current vice president of Mortar Board, represented the OWU chapter at the 2015 national conference held this summer in Phoenix. Schulze, a neuroscience and pre-med major, says she enjoyed meeting other honor society members from across the nation.

“We discussed program ideas, how to increase the chapter’s visibility on campus, and how to run an effective yet fun meeting,” Schulze says. “I am very excited for this school year to see what our club can accomplish.”

At the conference, members took the StrengthsQuest personality test to identify their top leadership skills and how to improve them. Schulze says attending the conference helped her discover more about herself as a leader.

Morgan Christie ’16, current president of Ohio Wesleyan’s Mortar Board, says she has many goals for the chapter this year. She plans to follow the main tenets: scholarship, leadership, and service.

“I’ve already been inspired by the members of Mortar Board as we begin planning our year, as they truly voice the importance of these tenets to themselves as individuals,” says Christie, a psychology major and French minor.

As part of their plans to increase Mortar Board visibility, Christie and Schulze already have met first-year residents at Welch Hall, where they discussed how to graduate with honors and explained the various honors societies available at Ohio Wesleyan.

The current Mortar Board members also want to showcase their appreciation for professors in new ways.

“Our plans include reaching out to the academic leaders of the freshman and sophomore classes, as well as having more personal connections with professors,” Christie says.

Gallaher wishes Christie and the other new Mortar Board members well as they enter their senior year. “Mortar Board is not about being the leader in the room, but about understanding how different leaders can come together,” she says.

Jennifer Jolley, assistant professor of music, has been named the new Mortar Board advisor this year.

“I am quite happy and thrilled to be the new Mortar Board advisor, and I’m proud that they have received the Silver Torch Award,” Jolley says.

Learn more about the Mortar Board national honor society and more about Ohio Wesleyan’s Honors Program.