How students serve community through school

Language Honors Societies:

Here at Perry, there are four languages taught: Spanish, French, German, and ASL. Of those four, three offer students the opportunity to be a part of an Honors Society specifically catered to that language. Students are eligible for induction into these programs once enrolled in their 5th semester of the class and must have maintained an A average in their language course and no less than a B average cumulatively.  


The Spanish Honor Society (Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica) allows students to further immerse themselves in the Hispanic culture. In order to join, you must have taken at least three levels of Spanish and received an A or B in each class. “You need 15 service hours, five of which are spanish-speaking. You also have to be beyond level three of the language” said Vice President, Anna Fountain. 

The most important aspect of society is the service that they do for the community. The most recent one that they did was volunteer at Chandler Contigo, a Hispanic ran festival at Galveston Elementary. “Mostly we try to help Spanish speaking communities, particularly elementary schools in the area or we go and help out at language fairs” said Fountain. 


The French Honor Society (The Société Honoraire de Français) is a national honor society with an overall goal to award students who have high academic achievements in their French studies and to “Celebrate and promote the cultural diversity of the French language and Francophone culture around the world, as French is the only language, besides English, spoken in all continents in the world” said sponsor Scott Nichols.

For this honors society, service hours are very important and Nichols believes they “help students give back to the community that is supporting their education” which is why it is a large part of their experience. In previous years, students worked with malnourished communities through l’Alliance Française of Greater Phoenix based in Paris, France. However, the main priority of this honors society, though it does include service, is to deepen the students’ knowledge and educate them, and their community members, on the variety of Francophone countries and cultures in, not only the world, but also within the Francophone community in the Phoenix Valley. 


For the German National Honor Society (Delta Phi Alpha), the overall goal is to promote the language and culture throughout one’s daily life. It also works to honor the students in the upper level German classes and their commitment to the rigorous curriculum that the upper level language classes promote.

While service hours are important to any honor society, “I believe promoting the culture and language is more important,” said sponsor Frau Zemaitis, “Ideally, the service hours required would be hours where a student services the community using the target language or in ways to promote the language and culture, but this is a difficult task as there are not very many German speaking outreach programs here in the Valley.” Because it is so difficult for German students who are part of this program to find service projects around the valley, Zemaitis has various activities the students can do around campus to promote the German language and gain their required hours.

Other Honors Societies:

Apart from languages, there are many other fields of study with their own special honors societies. Because these honors societies are especially catered to each program, the requirements are different for each one. 


The National Honors Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA) is a program that recognizes “outstanding artistic merit, leadership, and academic achievement” in students studying dance in high school. The requirements to be eligible change year-to-year and are ultimately up to the school sponsor(s), but this year, those a part of NHSDA are all juniors and seniors who have taken dance at the advanced or company level for at least two years. To be inducted, these students must have a minimum GPA of 3.25, accumulate at least 30 points awarded for dance related activities, and have at least 30 hours of dance related service hours.

Like other honors societies, NHSDA members can only count their service hours if they are related to dance. “Most of our dancers also dance at a studio and they get their hours by assisting classes there,” said dance teacher Rebecca Miller. For dancers that do not have this opportunity, they find themselves earning hours in more creative ways. “A couple weeks ago I helped tie dye shirts for our dance concert,” said junior advanced dancer Megan Nguyen. “I helped from 4-6pm and [Miller] gave me service hours for helping.” 


The Science National Honor Society is a program meant to recognize students who have excelled and dedicated themselves to their scientific studies. To be eligible for this society, students must maintain an overall minimum unweighted GPA of 3.0 and a minimum unweighted Science GPA of 3.5, must currently be enrolled in an Honors or AP Science Class, and must complete the required attendance and volunteer hours (5 pts./semester). 


RHO KAPPA is a Social Studies Honors Society that recognizes high school juniors and seniors who have excelled in the field of Social Studies. To be eligible for RHO KAPPA, students must have been at the Perry for all of Junior year, completed two one credit core courses in the field of social studies and currently be enrolled in a full credit of social studies courses with a minimum GPA in these classes of 4.00, have an overall minimum cumulative GPA of 3.80, and have no discipline issues on file with administration.

For RHO KAPPA, members must complete at least 10 hours of service, but the hours do not need to be directly related to social studies. Students usually get their hours outside of school and/or by participating in events organized by RHO KAPPA, whether it be conventions, inductions, etc. 

Service Clubs:

As mentioned earlier, service hours are a big part of most honors societies, which is one of the reasons the school has so many service related clubs. Our honors societies have so many participants, which means so many students are looking to get service hours. Leo Club is one of the biggest clubs on campus and is known for all the service opportunities it provides students, but Leo Club is just one of the many clubs doing this exact thing.

Operation Smile– 

Like many clubs at Perry, Operation Smile is a chapter of a larger organization. Operation Smile is a nonprofit medical service organization that helps provide aid to children who were born with cleft lips and their families. Students who are a part of the club participate in service projects and charity events throughout the year to raise money for these families.

Last year, one of the fundraisers they put together was selling World’s Finest Chocolate. “Half of the funds we raised from the whole year were from that one fundraiser,” said junior and co-president Triton Johnson. “I think we are definitely going to try to do more this year.” Aside from fundraising, the club also does service projects and helps students to gain service hours by participating. This month, they will be attending Feed My Starving Children as one of their may service events.


UNICEF is another club that is a chapter of a larger organization by the same name. As an organization, UNICEF is a program that provides humanitarian and developmental aid to children all over the world. It is one of the many service clubs at Perry that provides students with many opportunities to provide helpful service while getting the hours they want. 

Unlike other service clubs, UNICEF has a main focus and most of the service events they advertise and attend relate to it. They organize many service events throughout the year and all that they do, they (try to) attend as a group. “One of the biggest volunteering events we do is Feed My Starving Children,” said sophomore and president Anvita Limaye. “It’s a pretty common event that people go to for service hours but we try to do it multiple times because it is kind of exactly what the purpose of UNICEF is as an organization.”