We’re excited to bring you a blog post from the Baylor University chapter of NSCS, one of our most active chapters! Baylor’s NSCS Chapter President Rachel Vandenberg explains the steps that her chapter took to become one of our most engaged and active chapters.

“In the 2015-2016 school year, I was the secretary and treasurer for the Baylor University Chapter of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars.  During my first semester in this position, I led a committee which sought out feedback from our membership asking what they liked about our chapter and what else they would like to see. We were very excited about the responses that we received and we were able to implement three changes.

  • The first change was to begin a speaker series that would engage the membership with meaningful life lessons that would not necessary be learned in the classroom. We arranged for three speakers to come in during the spring semester. The first speech was given by the president of an investment advisory firm, who demonstrated how we can all be millionaires by saving for our retirement.  The second speech was given by a Holocaust survivor, who shared with us the importance of forgiveness. The third speech was given by the first person to graduate in the state of Texas as a Doctor of Oriental Medicine, who gave us a new perspective on healthy living while in college and after.
  • The second change was to use one of our two monthly meetings as a platform to discuss a campus or worldwide current event.
  • The third change was to update the point system used by the chapter so that attendance to the speaker series and participation in the current event discussions would count towards achieving “active” membership status.

As a result of these changes, our chapter went on to receive a 100%-member satisfaction rate as well as triple the number of “active” members from the prior school year. 

This school year, I am president of our chapter.  Since the “speaker series” proved to be successful in engaging members, we have decided to have a guest speaker at every meeting.  So far this semester, we have welcomed a psychologist from our university’s counseling center.  He spoke about health from the minds perspective.  Each of the 40 members that attended were actively participating during the speech and have given encouraging feedback. We have other great speakers lined up for the rest of the year.  One particular guest speaker that numerous members are really looking forward to is from our university’s Career and Professional Development office.  She will speak about resumes and job applications in the fall and will return in the spring to guide members on applying to graduate school.

Not only has our chapter maintained this “speaker series”, but we also are increasing our involvement in the community.  For example, we have decided to add an additional March To College Day, which will be held the fall.  We are calling this event Fall Back Into School.  We are consistently reflecting and asking how we can be better.  We look to members for ideas as well as brainstorm for new ideas at each officer meeting.  Here at Baylor, we are all enthusiastic, passionate, and dedicated to NSCS.  Our chapter’s mission is to give back to the community through service while furthering our member’s education outside of the classroom on real-world matters and valuable life lessons.

Be sure to watch all of our guest speakers on our YouTube page!  Go to www.youtube.com/c/BaylorNSCS or search “Baylor NSCS” on YouTube! “

rachel-vandenbergRachel Vandenberg is the current president of the NSCS Chapter at Baylor University.