USD Mortar Board Honor Society honored nationally for excellence

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society has recognized 91 collegiate chapters for maintaining outstanding national standards and deadlines, including the University of South Dakota which was one of 67 chapters honored with the Silver Torch Award.

The Silver Torch Award is an honor bestowed on chapters that meet all national standards and deadlines. Twenty-four collegiate chapters earned the Gold Torch Award, an honor presented annually to the most exceptional chapters of Mortar Board. In addition to USD, other notable chapters receiving 2014 Silver Torch Awards at the Society’s National Conference in Atlanta were Auburn University, Baylor University, Coe College, Drake University, Florida State University, Kansas State University, Occidental College, the University of Kansas and University of North Dakota.

“It is an incredible honor to receive the Silver Torch Award as it shows our chapter’s dedication to meeting national standards and deadlines this past year,” said Rayna Pearson of Sioux Falls, S.D., president of USD’s Mortar Board chapter. “Our chapter is currently working on fundraisers to supply local elementary schools with more books. Academically, our members are college seniors who are in the top 5 percent of their class, have leadership positions on campus, and are highly involved in giving back to our campus and the community.”

Mortar Board is the premier national honor society recognizing college seniors for outstanding achievement in scholarship, leadership and service. Since its founding in 1918, more than a quarter of a million members have been selected for membership at 231 chartered chapters across the United States. Mortar Board provides members with opportunities for continued leadership development, promotes service to colleges and universities and encourages lifelong contributions to the global community.

ABOUT USD

Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 206 undergraduate and 71 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 17:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 17 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

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