Blog Column: 

Ryan’s Question: How does it feel to be inducted into Phi Kappa Phi?

Amberly’s Answer: It feels kind of weird—but a neat kind of weird—to be perfectly honest.

(For those who don’t know what Phi Kappa Phi is, it’s an honor society that you can find out more about here. I was inducted into the society last Sunday, March 31.)

I’m not used to a big deal being made of my academic achievements. I do my assignments, I try my best on them, I turn them in, and then I get a grade. Sometimes, a couple of months after the semester is over, I get an email from UMass telling me I have made the Dean’s List. When this happens, I nod, update my resume, and move on to whatever big assignment I’m working currently on.

So when CHC Dean Gerzina tells me that she is honored to stand in front of me (and, well, also about 100 or so other students, but still), it’s something of a surreal experience.

I am trying to learn to take more credit for my accomplishments, but it honestly feels like I have just … done stuff. I followed my interests and, by some stroke of luck, my hard work paid off. It doesn’t feel like I’ve done anything particularly exceptional.

I have worked really hard now, and I’m trying to give myself more credit over all the hours I’ve spent. Not just literal college credit, but praise and appreciation. I think it is helpful when others give me credit too—not that I am demanding they must, but sometimes we’re so trapped in our own heads that it takes a gentle nudge from others to see what’s really in front of us.

So, I guess if there’s anything to learn from Phi Kappa Phi, it’s to really study what you care about (because all the hours of working hard are easier when you actually like what you’re studying), and to make sure to congratulate others for their achievements. They might not realize they’ve achieved something themselves.

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