Student and Academic Life

Phi Kappa Phi Inducts 31 New Members

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 12, 2020) — University of Kentucky’s chapter of Phi Kappa Phi (PKP) welcomed 31 new members during an induction ceremony on Oct. 22. The ceremony was held virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Founded in 1897 at the University of Maine, The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is the nation’s oldest, largest and most selective all-discipline honor society. Each year, approximately 30,000 students, faculty, professional staff and alumni are initiated into the organization's chapters on more than 300 campuses in the United States, Puerto Rico and the Philippines. Membership is by invitation only to the top 10% of seniors and graduate students and 7.5% of juniors. Faculty, professional staff and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction also qualify. The prestigious honor society also awards $1 million each year to outstanding students, members, chapters and institutions through its national awards program

“I joined Phi Kappa Phi primarily because of its longstanding reputation as an avid supporter of academic achievement and its many scholarship opportunities,” said new member and food science senior Clarissa Somers. “Not only did its well-known name draw me in, but also its dedication to its members and their fields.”

The new members are: Harrison Avera, Laine Barschak, Lily Beasley, Jordan Bernard, Nathan Bodkin, Kayli Bolton, Elle Bottom, Cameron Brewer, Alex Chong, Arianna Conner, Chloe Ditka, Amelia Floyd, Jerrica Flynn, Brett Gasior, Kristine Gauthier, Robert Hardell Jr., Lauren Harris, Caslen Johnson, Julia Kelliher, Barrett Kerr, Mickayla Mason, Caleigh Ramey, Kelly Rodriguez, Halle Shannon, Clarissa Somers, Alexis Stewart, Benjamin Stone, Sarah Van Vooren, Luke Williams, Lindsey Young and Jingxia Zhong.

Buzz Burnam, recently retired associate director of Diversity Recruitment in the Office of Undergraduate Admission, was recognized during the ceremony for his service to Phi Kappa Phi. Burnam served as UK’s chapter secretary from 2015-2020.

Click here to watch a recording of the ceremony. 

The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is supported on campus by the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence within the Office of the Provost.

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.