Western Welcomes the First Circle

Fifteen students at Western were inducted into Western’s first Omicron Delta Kappa’s (ODK) circle on October 20, 2016.

ODK has more than 285 active circles at colleges and universities across the United States. The honor society remains committed to developing campus leaders who will become tomorrow’s community leaders.

“This is creating a nice network of peers for these student leaders. They were exceptional student leaders who were selected to be a part of OΔK.” said Gary Pierson, vice president of student affairs.

The students inducted into the circle were: Alejandro Alejandra, Hannah Braden, Sara Coblentz, Scott Doyle, Isabel Engeman, Bryan Gray, Alma Johnson, Courtney Kauffman, Kelly Limberg, Chelsea Meininger, Chevy Mohr, Hannah Montoya, Peter Noon, Emma Sellen and Brenda Suarez.

“Western decided to bring Omicron Delta Kappa, the National Leadership Honors Society, to campus because of the ever-growing and talented leaders we have on campus. Some of these leaders, including the ones that we recognized in the first ODK initiation circle, don’t always receive the recognition that they deserve.” said program coordinator Annie Westbury, who ran the event.

Western is one of just two universities in Colorado with active ODK circles.

The students inducted at Western are strong academically but also active leaders in one or more of the five pillars of campus life:

  • scholarship
  • athletics
  • campus or community service, social or religious activities, student government
  • journalism, speech and mass media
  • creative and performing arts

“We are promoting education awareness to the university community about ODK and what it is all about, and recognize the students who were selected into ODK. We want these students to talk to other students to generate interest and have additional students apply,” Pierson said.

ODK membership is diverse. Members come from various majors, clubs and organizations on campus. It brings students with different mindsets together to talk about what they see on campus and what they, as leaders, would like to improve.

“We are geared to have this circle grow for future years at Western and plan on starting to recruit and seek nominations next February and March for the induction of new ODK students in April 2017,” Westbury said.

ODK recognizes students who may not have their faces in the forefront but have a leadership style that is unique and promising.  Often it is only leaders with strong voices and a big presence that receive recognition.  Western aims to provide opportunities for innovative leadership by nominating a cross section of leadership styles as it continues to elevate learning with programs in place like ODK.

Story and photos by Grace Flynn.

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Wednesday, November 2, 2016 - 12:00pm