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Public Affairs : Phi Kappa Phi Inductions

2014 inductees into Phi Kappa Phi recognized 

Story and photos by Kathy Eastwood
Staff Writer
 
WEST POINT, N.Y. (April 24, 2014) — Fifty-five cadets from the Class of 2014 and 2015 were inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society April 16 in the Haig Room of Jefferson Hall along with nine staff and faculty.

The 2014 Scholastic Achievement Award was presented to Class of 2014 Cadets Ellen Chamberlin, Department of English and Philosophy, and Chloe Drummond, Department of Mathematical Sciences. Three instructors or assistant professors received Scholastic Achievement Awards for their departments. The awardees were: Lt. Col. Remi M. Hajjar, Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership, and Dr. Kendall Williams and Lt. Col. Shaw Yoshitani, both from the Department of Mathematical Sciences.

Dr. Lynn Fielitz received the award for the associate or full professor category for the Department of Physical Education.

Twenty-two Class of 2016 cadets received awards for outstanding yearlings and 12 Class of 2017 cadets received the awards for outstanding plebes. These cadets will be considered for induction into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society when they become juniors and seniors.

Admission to the honor society is by invitation only and requires nomination and approval by a chapter in accordance with the bylaws of both the chapter and the national organization.

Seniors must be in the top 10 percent of their class while juniors must be in the top 7.5 percent of their class. Each chapter may elect a limited number of faculty, staff and alumni.

Outgoing president of Phi Kappa Phi, Dr. Kenny McDonald, briefly spoke to the attendees about the award bestowed on the U.S. Military Academy Chapter 204.

“We have achieved the 2012-13 Chapter of Excellence, one of 18 out of 300 to be awarded this distinction,” McDonald said. “And it is the first time that West Point achieved this distinction.”

The new president-elect of the society is Lt. Col. Jeff Starke, environmental sequence curriculum coordinator for the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering.

Dean of the Academic Board Brig. Gen. Timothy Trainor presented the certificates to the inductees and spoke to the cadets about the history of West Point and the exceptional training and education cadets receive at USMA.

“You have strived for excellence and that is demonstrated by this award (induction),” Trainor said. “That is what makes this place so successful, your success. Gen. Colin Powell once referred to West Point as the ‘wellspring of our profession.’”

The guest speaker at the induction ceremony was Cyrus Vance Jr., district attorney for New York County in New York City.   

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The 2014 Scholastic Achievement Awards were presented at the annual induction of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society induction ceremony April 16 in the Haig Room at Jefferson Hall. (L-R_ Dr. Lynn Fielitz, Department of Physical Education, Dr. Kendall Williams, Department of Mathematical Sciences, Lt. Col. Remi Hajjar, Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership, Brig. Gen. Timothy Trainor, Dean of the Academic Board, Class of 2104 Cadet Chloe Drummond, Department of Mathematical Sciences and Class of 2014 Cadet Ellen Chamberlin, Department of English and Philosophy.
 
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A few of the 55 cadets inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society squeeze into frame for a photo opportunity with Dean of the Academic Board Brig. Gen. Timothy Trainor inside the Haig Room April 16 after the induction ceremony.

“I am proud to say there are strong bonds between West Point and my family,” Vance said. “My father, after whom I am named, was Secretary of the Army in the 1960s. The Army holds a special place for my father, and to be able to come here tonight and see his portrait provides many memories for me and I thank you for that.”

Cyrus Vance Sr. was also secretary of state during President Carter’s administration and the 1993 Thayer Award recipient.

Vance said he does not have military experience, but said he became a DA because he thought he had something to offer and it would be meaningful to him.

“As future graduates of West Point, following graduation, you will devote a significant part of the next stage of your life to service to our country,” Vance said. “I expect many of you wanted to do this and give your life meaning and that is why you chose this school, the school that presents a great paradox of leadership, of service and makes you leaders.” 
 
 
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Dean of the Academic Board, Brig. Gen. Timothy Trainor congratulates Class of 2016 Cadet Erica MacSwan, one of 22 Outstanding Yearlings. The award was presented at the annual induction ceremony of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society April 16 in the Haig Room of Jefferson Hall.