By Steven Krolak
(NEW ALBANY, Ind.)–Seventeen IU Southeast non-traditional students have been inducted into the Pinnacle Honor Society.
Founded in 1989, the Pinnacle Honor Society is now a national organization of over 150 member institutions (including IU Bloomington and IU Southeast) that recognizes the academic and personal achievements of non-traditional students who have had to overcome significant life obstacles to achieve academic success.
To be admitted as a Pinnacle member, students
- Must be 25 years of age or older;
- Must be a junior or senior student with a grade point average of 3.0, or a graduate student with a grade point average of 3.4;
- Must have demonstrated involvement and/or leadership in campus or community organizations
This year’s Pinnacle honorees at IU Southeast are:
- Carolyn Basham
- Anthony Wayne Boone
- Jonathan Kosmas Cameron
- Nicole Lynne Driscoll
- Aaron B. Dyche
- Ashley J. Griffith
- Kimberly Kearschner
- Anthony J. Miles
- Sandra L. Mills
- Kayla Owsley
- Kirk Randolph
- Lorianne Snelling
- Teresa K. Stengel
- Ashley Hornek Taylor
- Kelsey Thompson
- Nancy A. Bailey Thornton
- Sarah Vaughn
These outstanding students will be honored with a special packet of Pinnacle keepsakes, including an honor cord and a pin to wear at Commencement, as well as an award certificate, an official seal, and a letter from Pinnacle congratulating them for their hard work, and high academic standing.
Kimberly Pelle, coordinator of non-traditional student programs and manager of the Adult Student Center (ACS), was herself inducted when she was a student at IU Southeast in the early 1990s. Now she helps those who face similar challenges, and who exhibit the same drive to excel.
“Adult students have so many responsibilities and priorities in their lives, and oftentimes school is not Number One on the list,” Pelle said. “They have children, jobs, financial obligations, elderly parents to care for, and their own extracurricular activities, yet they still stay focused on their studies, get involved on campus and in their communities, and maintain high GPAs.”
According to Pelle, responses to being recognized range from pride that their effort has been honored, to the knowledge, among those with children, that they are setting an example of the importance of education.
“Non-traditional students bring diversity to our campus and different perspectives to our classrooms,” Pelle said. “They are here because they crave an education, and many go on to become lifelong learners and leaders of our community. They are special.”