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Welcome New Chapters

Cascade High School
Chapter: Charter of Champions
Wartrace, TN

Edison High School, NJ
Chapter: Missing Apostrophes
Edison, NJ

Newsome High School
Chapter: Newsome High School
Lithia, FL

Oxford Area High School
Chapter: Bildungsroman
Oxford, PA

Riverside High School
Chapter: Rho Alpha Mu
Leesburg, VA

In This Issue

  1. NEHS Scholarships and the Common Reader for 2015-2016
  2. 2016 African American Read-In
  3. Summer Study Stipends for Junior Members of NEHS
  4. Teen Ink Magazine
  5. Intellectual Freedom Challenge Winners
  6. NEHS Project Grants

Greetings from the Central Office of National English Honor Society and Sigma Tau Delta. The last weeks of January have brought weather challenges to many parts of the country; we trust routines are getting back to normal if school has been interrupted for any of you. The arrival of February often signals the time for important educational announcements; seniors begin to receive notification of university acceptances and move on to make final decisions about their future goals. For all students, the middle months of the semester are filled with concentration and study as curricula pushes more deeply into subject matter.

In the Central Office of NEHS, we are focused on final preparations for the upcoming international convention of Sigma Tau Delta, our sponsoring organization, which will be held this year in Minneapolis, MN, a major event attended by well over 1,000 university students. NEHS Advisory Council members also meet during the convention, awarding scholarships, planning for the upcoming year, and participating in the convention academic activities. We trust NEHS is one of the bright spots in your academic endeavors. We are so pleased to let you know that NEHS grew by a record number of chapters and students in 2015—we now have over 810 chapters worldwide.

The February issue of NEHSXpress focuses on the following—a call for Project Grants applications for first semester next year, updates on scholarships and the Common Reader, the announcement of the Intellectual Freedom Challenge results, information from NCTE concerning the 2016 African American Read-In, information about Teen Ink, and Summer Study Stipends for Juniors. We hope you find it useful; please send news about your chapter activities to NEHS Director, Dave Wendelin.

NEHS Scholarships and the Common Reader for 2015-2016

Scholarship essays based on the Common Reader, The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd, have been submitted and are currently being assessed by members of the NEHS Advisory Council. We received 122 essays this year, a record number. Final scholarship decisions will be made by the Advisory Council in early March and students will be notified soon thereafter of the results.

Looking ahead to the 2016-2017 school year, we would welcome suggestions for a common reader. We seek texts, either fiction or non-fiction, modern or classic, that present challenging and interesting content for senior NEHS members wishing to write for scholarships. If you have ideas of texts—most particularly titles that are NOT used as whole class study material—please send them to NEHS Director, Dave Wendelin.

2016 African American Read-In

Chapters are invited to serve as hosts for a 2016 African American Read-In during the month of February. We urge you to make literacy a significant part of Black History Month by hosting and coordinating Read-Ins in your communities. Hosting a Read-In is as simple as bringing together school and community members to share a book or as elaborate as working with libraries to present public readings and displays.

Visit the National Council of Teachers of English website for more information.

Summer Study Stipends for Junior Members of NEHS

It is not too early for current junior members of NEHS to plan to apply for a Summer Study Stipend. These $750 awards are intended to support students who have been accepted to and will be attending an academic study program that will take place during summer of 2016. Applications for this competitive award will be accepted from April 4 through 11:59 p.m., Central Daylight Time (CDT), Monday, May 2.

Visit: Summer Study Stipend Award and application process

Teen Ink Magazine

Teen Ink publishes a monthly 48 page print magazine that has been presenting teen writing, art, and photos for over 25 years. The magazine goes to subscribing schools and libraries nationwide in addition to the homes of thousands of teenagers. The publication has no staff writers, so all the content comes directly from its readers. Any teenager aged 13-19 can submit their work for publishing consideration and there is no charge to submit or to be published.

NEHS is now partnering with Teen Ink to promote student writing. Check their website for more information. All NEHS chapters will receive complementary copies of the March edition of the magazine.

Intellectual Freedom Challenge Winners

Congratulations to the following students for submitting excellent essays to the Intellectual Freedom Challenge. Each has received $100 plus a $25 gift certificate from Better World Books. Additionally, their NEHS chapters have received $50 for encouraging them to enter. The winners are: Caroline Kim and Kaila Kim, Palos Verdes Peninsula High School, CA; Megan Price and Keeley Logsdon, Porta High School, IL; Caroline Brysacz and Prerna Pamar, Saint Mary's Hall, TX; Christine Kamba, Central High School, TX; Samuel O'Rourke and Jordyn Williams, Junius H. Rose High School, NC; and Irem Bulut, Uskudar American Academy, Turkey.

NEHS Project Grants

We urge chapters to consider designing a project to make an impact in your community next fall. Project Grants for up to $200 in funds to support local chapter activities that meet the mission of NEHS are available each semester. We always have more money in that budget line than is requested, so the odds your project will be approved are great! Applications for grants may be submitted by May 9 to be utilized during the first semester of the 2016-2017 school year.

Visit: Project Grant Guidelines and application instructions