Upcoming Dates

April 2
Applications Close for
Outstanding Advisor Award
Chapter Service Awards

April 9
Applications Open for
Junior Summer Study Award

April 30
Applications Close for
Junior Summer Study Award

May 7
Applications Due for
Chapter Project Grants

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Welcome New Chapters

Faith Baptist School
Chapter: LOL: Leaders of Literature
Canoga Park, CA

Innovation High School
Chapter: Innovation High School
Jersey City, NJ

John E. Dwyer Technology Academy
Chapter: Upsilon Xi
Elizabeth, NJ

John M. Harlan High School
Chapter: Harlan High School National English Honor Society
San Antonio, TX

Manchester Memorial High School
Chapter: Manchester Memorial English Honor Society
Manchester, NH

Runnels School
Chapter: Runnels High School
Baton Rouge, LA

Voorhees High School
Chapter: Voorhees NEHS
Glen Gardner, NJ

Wakefield High School, VA
Chapter: Emily Dickinson
Arlington, VA

Westwood High School, SC
Chapter: J. Gordon Coogler
Blythewood, SC

In This Issue

  1. Chapter Project Grants
  2. Scholarships and the Common Reader for 2018-2019
  3. 2018 African American Read-In
  4. Outstanding Advisor Awards
  5. Summer Study Awards for Junior Members of NEHS
  6. New Advisory Council Members
  7. New NEHS Website

As February dawns, the staff members of National English Honor Society and Sigma Tau Delta bring you greetings. February is often the time for important educational announcements; seniors receive notifications of university acceptances and begin to make final decisions about their future educational endeavors. February often confounds us; recall the description of Benedick from Much Ado About Nothing: "Good morrow, Benedick. Why, what's the matter, / That you have such a February Face, / So full of frost, of storm and cloudiness?" (Act V, Scene 4). Notes American journalist, Linda Ellerbee, "In the coldest February, as in every other month in every other year, the best thing to hold on to in this world is each other" (Move On: Adventures in the Real World, 1991); as we witness troubling events, the "frost, storms and cloudiness" of our days, it is certainly good advice to hold fast to each other.

February literary birthdays include Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807); Charles Dickens (1812); W.E.B. Du Bois (1868); James Joyce (1882); Sinclair Lewis (1885); and W.H. Auden (1907). February is also Black History Month.

This issue of NEHSXpress focuses on the following—a call for Project Grant applications for fall 2018, Merit Scholarship updates, the new NEHS website, information from NCTE about the 2018 African American Read-In, Summer Study Award applications for juniors, Outstanding Advisor Award nominations, and a welcome to the new Advisory Council members. We hope you find the information helpful; please send news about your chapter activities to NEHS Director, Dave Wendelin.

Chapter Project Grants

We urge chapters to consider designing a project to make a community impact next fall. Project Grants for up to $200 to support local chapter activities meeting the NEHS mission are available each semester. We always have more money in the budget line for grants than is requested, so the odds your project will be approved are great! Applications for grants may be submitted by May 7, 2018, to be utilized during the first semester of 2018-2019.

Chapter Project Grant - Details and Application Information

Scholarships and the Common Reader for 2018-2019

Scholarship applications based on the Common Reader, On Canaan's Side, have been submitted and are currently being assessed by NEHS Chapter Advisors. Once the Advisors have completed their evaluations, members of the NEHS Advisory Council will assess the top applications before final decisions are made. Finalist applications are reviewed in late March in Cincinnati, OH, during the Sigma Tau Delta 2018 International Convention. Students will be notified soon thereafter of the results.

Looking ahead to the 2018-2019 school year, we continue to welcome suggestions for a Common Reader. While several novel titles have been submitted, we would love more. We seek texts, either fiction or non-fiction, modern or classic, presenting challenging and interesting content for senior NEHS members wishing to write for scholarships. If you have recommendations—most particularly titles that are currently NOT used as part of traditional curricula—please send them to NEHS Director, Dave Wendelin. We will send a survey of the suggestions to all Advisors in March.

2018 African American Read-In

Chapters are invited to serve as hosts for a 2018 African American Read-In during 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.

NCTE provides excellent lessons and resources for African American Read-In and other topics at www.ReadWriteThink.org.

Outstanding Advisor Awards

The John L. Manear Outstanding Advisor Award is presented annually to one Advisor who has given generously of time, talent, creativity, and leadership to a local NEHS chapter. The award recognizes Advisors who foster the spirit of academic excellence and community service in their work with chapter members. The recipient of the John L. Manear Outstanding Advisor Award will receive a $500 check from National English Honor Society and a plaque. Two additional awards of $250 may be awarded to recognize the contributions of other nominees. Nominations are due April 2, 2018.

Summer Study Awards for Junior Members of NEHS

It is not too early for current junior members of NEHS to begin to plan to apply for a Summer Study Award. These $750 awards support students who have been accepted to and will be attending an academic study program taking place during summer of 2018. Applications for this competitive award will be accepted from Monday, April 9, through Monday, April 30 11:59 p.m., CST.

New Advisory Council Members

We are pleased to announce the appointment of two new NEHS Advisory Council members. Jim Brady from Bishop Eustace High School, NJ, and Lindsey Ward from The Woodlands College Park High School, TX, representing the Eastern Region and the Southwest Region, respectively. Both have agreed to lend their leadership expertise to the governing body of NEHS. Advisors needing support in those two regions are invited to contact these colleagues.

New NEHS Website

In early January, after months of work, the new NEHS website was launched. The webpage is now mobile-friendly and is accessible from any electronic device. Much thanks goes to the technology experts in the Central Office, who, supported by the IT department at Northern Illinois University, dedicated many hours of work to bring this project to reality. As you navigate the new site, please let us know if you have difficulty finding information; contact nehs@niu.edu with suggestions or concerns.