OCC’s chapter of honor society Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) welcomed more than 200 new members during its spring induction ceremony March 29 in Storer Auditorium.
The event was highlighted by the inspirational words of former OCC student Dr. Emad Rahim. Next month he will receive the Outstanding Alumni Award from the American Association of Community Colleges. He will be one of only five honorees nationwide.
Rahim came to OCC in the late 1990s after graduating from Fowler High School. He struggled as a student until he was diagnosed with dyslexia. The discovery opened up a world of possibilities for him. Today he is an Endowed Chair and Director for the Project Center of Excellence at Bellevue University in Omaha, Nebraska.
During his energetic and animated presentation Rahim encouraged inductees to take advantage of the opportunities at OCC rather than focusing on which college they will attend next. “Often when we go to community college people tell you it is a stepping stone. A stepping stone does not look like success to me. Community college created a foundation for me, a foundation of success.” Following his presentation Rahim was awarded an honorary membership in PTK.
Other event speakers included OCC President Dr. Casey Crabill, PTK Advisor and Sociology Professor Dr. Annie Tuttle, PTK Chapter President Haley Hurst and PTK Chapter Vice President for Scholarship Jon Minnberg.
OCC’s Music department was well represented at the event. The Chamber Ensemble under the leadership of Dr. David J. Rudari performed the National Anthem. The ceremony closed with sophomore pianist Ryan Case and the Chamber Ensemble singing the Phi Theta Kappa song.
The Phi Theta Kappa Student Leadership team is:
- Haley Hurst, President
- Jon Minnberg, VP for Scholarship
- Jerry Tingley, VP for Leadership
- Neil Minet, VP for Service
- Casey Rochette, VP for Fellowship
- Carrie Daignault, Executive Secretary for NY Region
- Blake Carter, Leadership Team
- Heather Flewelling, Leadership Team
- John Schuermann, Leadership Team
OCC’s PTK chapter and Honors Program are located in Coulter Library, Suite 204. The suite includes offices for the coordinator and faculty members as well as student lounge space, computers, a printer and a multi-purpose meeting/classroom/workshop space.