A chapter of Alpha Mu Gamma, the foreign language honor society, has been established at USF St. Petersburg through the World Languages Program in the Department of Society, Culture, and Language.
It is the eighth honor society at USFSP and the 350th chapter of Alpha Mu Gama.
“This is excellent news for our campus and for our students in Spanish, French and Arabic who will be recognized for their efforts in learning world languages and cultures,” said Martine Fernandes, Ph.D., associate professor of French and coordinator of the World Languages Program.
The society’s primary purpose is honoring students for outstanding achievement. Membership is available to students who have a 3.0 grade point average and have earned 2 A’s in one world language at USFSP. Students of American Sign Language and English as a Second Language may also apply. Initiated members receive a parchment certificate of membership and may wear the scroll-shaped gold key or pin. Members also qualify for exclusive scholarships.
“In our era of global interconnectedness, language skills in addition to cultural expertise are some of the main sought-after characteristics of globally competent citizens and leaders,” said Frederic Leveziel, Ph.D., visiting assistant professor in the World Languages Program in the Department of Society, Culture, and Language who led the effort to establish the chapter. “This chapter reaffirms our commitment to a world class education for USFSP students.”
Alpha Mu Gamma is the country’s first and largest national collegiate foreign language honor society. It was established April 29, 1931 at Los Angeles City College by five members of the College foreign language faculty saw the need for a society to honor achievement in all foreign languages at an early stage in the student’s career.
“This is a great achievement and I know that our students will benefit,” said Norine Noonan, Ph.D., vice chancellor for academic affairs.
The society offers honorary memberships open to community and civic leaders recognized for their language ability, their interest in the study and use of world languages or for their demonstration of a sympathetic understanding of other peoples.
The name Alpha Mu Gamma is composed of the names of the initial Greek letters found in the phrase, “Amphi Mouse Glosson,” meaning, “For the Muse of Languages.” The motto of the Society is “Search with eyes aloft,” from Virgil’s “Aeneid,” Book VI. The emblem is the Golden Bough, mentioned in Virgil’s “Aeneid,” Book VI, and is a golden olive branch.