The Alpha Epsilon Mu Chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) International Honor Society at the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) held its spring 2023 induction ceremony on February 21st to induct 18 new members. In addition to family and friends of the new and current PTK members, ASCC administrators present included Rev. Iasepi Ulu of the Board of Higher Education, President Dr. Rosevonne Pato, and Vice President of Administration and Finance Mr. Sonny Leomiti.
For each induction, the PTK invites a distinguished member of the community to give special remarks, and at this semester’s ceremony, their special guest speaker was former PTK member Mrs. Jireh Kruse Langkilde. A June 2012 Tafuna High School graduate, Mrs. Langkilde entered ASCC that same month, where she served as first a member and then as an officer in the PTK. After completing an Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Arts as a Summa Cum Laude at ASCC, she went on to earn her Bachelors degree in English as a Magna Cum Laude from North Park University in Chicago, Illinois. Next, she attended Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, where she graduated with a Masters degree in Professional Writing as a Summa Cum Laude. Today, Mrs. Langkilde describes herself as “a wife, mother of three boys, and a disciple of Jesus.”
For her keynote address, Mrs. Langkilde gave a succinct but powerful account of how faith had provided her with a bedrock to face the many challenges that come with pursuing a college education away from home, and she encouraged the current PTK members to likewise look to the spiritual for answers and the strength to persevere should they find themselves in similar situations. Following Mrs. Langkilde’s address, the lighting of the ceremonial PTK candles took place, during which each new member was introduced as they received their PTK stolls and certificates of membership, and then proceeded to light their own candle off of a pre-set flame. When each of the 18 inductees held a lighted candle, they recited the PTK oath and pledge as a group, thus completing their initiation into the society. To complete the proceedings, ASCC President Dr. Rosevonne Pato gave brief words of encouragement to wish the inductees good luck with their future endeavors.
Phi Theta Kappa recognizes and encourages excellence in scholarship among associate degree students. The Greek words Phi Theta Kappa mean wisdom (Phi), aspiration (Theta) and purity (Kappa). The society bases its programs on its four hallmarks: scholarship, leadership, service and fellowship. The society provides more than $35 million worth of scholarships annually to students nationwide. Each member is automatically enrolled in the PTK Transfer Database, which links senior institutions across the nation offering scholarships to PTK members.
PTK recruiting at ASCC begins during registration week and continues into the second week of the semester, during which time applications are available to all students. Applicants who have a GPA of 3.5 or better move on to the interview process, where head advisor Mr. Kuki Tuiasosopo and co-advisors Dr. Ernie Seiuli and Mrs. Amete Mulipola-Moefiainu then determine their eligibility. Once the advisors choose prospective members from among the interviewees, a formal letter is issued to each successful applicant informing them of their acceptance into the society.
The spring 2023 Inductees are Donwen Hong, Tavui Toatelegese II, Michael Falaniko Iosefo, Gabrielle Agaletaua Paopao, Lorna Siaumau-Sanitoa, Kirsten Leuteutifa Tulouna, Jasmine Liu, Fouaimalo Luamanu, Deliah Samarra Va’itaua Paopao, Marianive Julie Tauave, Iris Peleuatete Penitusi, Maugasa Perina Faaea, Themis Palemene, Apollonia Sene Sevaaetasi, Sinive Zandea Auapa’au, Ualesi Mua, and Milo Vaelua. Current PTK Members include Janella Musuni (President), Duane Faoasau (Vice President), Ayjah Leo (Treasurer), Evis Takubala (Secretary), and Sia Atafua (PR Secretary).
For more information about the nationwide activities of Phi Theta Kappa, visit their website at: www.ptk.org.