Excelsior’s Chapter of Alpha Sigma Lambda, a national honor society recognizing adult students who achieved and maintained high scholastic standards while handling their life responsibilities, welcomed its largest group of inductees on July 13.
The 121 new members were recognized during an induction ceremony held at The Desmond Hotel in Albany, New York, the day before Commencement. Those in attendance included 14 student inductees and new honorary members Mary Berkery, faculty program director; V. Blue Lemay, faculty program director; Rachel Stolicky, senior academic advisor; and Jean Taylor, executive director of learning assessments.
Lemay, who oversees the humanities program, was also the guest speaker. In her remarks, she described critical thinking as inquiry, questioning, and analyzing. “And you wouldn’t think that critical thinking maintains our democracy and sustains our economy, but it does,” she said.
She told graduates that what remains constant in a changing economy are the methods you learn to approach problems. “In a changing economy, the ability to ask questions and to think critically is actually crucial,” said Lemay. She said the liberal arts graduate is prepared for the work situation in which a specific problem that hasn’t been seen before needs a solution. “You’ll have the flexible, analytical mind which can work with ambiguity and uncertainty in order to successfully solve it. So that’s the benefit of a liberal education.”
Alpha Sigma Lambda is the oldest and largest chapter-based honor society for full- and part-time students. Excelsior’s Sigma Zeta Chapter is one of more than 300 chartered chapters throughout the United States. Students are invited to participate in the honor society based on their earned grade point average of 3.2 or higher, completion of 24 Excelsior College credits, and representation in the 20th percentile of their class.