Not all that it’s made out to be: Students are told to avoid ‘honors society’ emails

Analicia Haynes, Editor-in-Chief

Just a click of a button in an email would activate an Honor Society membership that promises a slew of “featured privileges” like “exclusive” scholarship listings, full access to “career insider guide books,” dental, vision and health discount plans and dining discounts at 18,000 restaurants nationwide.

That is what was listed in one of the many emails sent to students encouraging them to join an Honor’s Society.

The email in reference was sent to a member of the News staff and was sent from [email protected]

Upon entering the URL in the search bar, a site appears that seems legit.

But Sienna Mark, a residence assistant at Stevenson Hall and a Honor’s Ambassador, said if anyone receives this email, they should delete right away.

Once they do that, she said they should then permanently delete it from the trash folder.

Richard England, the dean of the Honor’s College, said during a January interview that although it is hard to tell whether the organization is affiliated with Eastern, students should keep in mind the cost of the “membership.”

He said organizations like this try to make a profit and although they might offer some tangible benefits, they are still making a profit by charging monthly or yearly fees.

England said legitimate organizations only request a one-time membership fee.

He also said to consider that students’ emails are made available to the public.

Therefore, anyone can get them and England said these organizations just send out emails to anyone that is a student and sometimes not all of the students are part of the honor’s program or high achieving.

However, he said there are legitimate and accredited honor societies available for students to join that are not trying to make a profit.

“They do provide legitimate, tangible benefits to students,” England said.

He said students who are interested in joining an honor’s society should look for ones that are associated with campus.

Mark said the Association of Honors Students and Honors Ambassadors are two organizations on campus that students could join if they are in the honor’s program.

Mark said she has been receiving these for the last three years and there are red flags that stand out to her.

If the email or letter exhibits bad grammar, provides expensive membership options or has branches across the nation that are not localized at Eastern, then the email or letter should be flagged, Mark said.

“The fact that no one from the Honors College had ever mentioned this before as a valid option to get involved,” Mark also said.

Analicia Haynes can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].