It’s an honor and a personal feat. More than just a membership into a premier group of fellow students with a penchant for straight A’s, being a part of the National Junior Honor Society shows the character and potential future leadership of the honoree. There are many benefits to being asked to be a part of the National Junior Honor Society. Becoming a member of the NJHS shows that you are a self-motivated and hardworking student and a person who considers the needs of others and who dedicates himself to the pursuit of higher education.

How to Become a Member

To become a member, a faculty council from the school’s chapter needs to select you as a candidate. If your grade point average meets the criteria for the school’s NJHS chapter, then you may be considered for membership.

Once you have been tapped for inclusion in the NJHS, they will consider your citizenship, service, leadership and character both in and out of the hours you spend at school. Consider what you contribute to your community as well as how you assist other students, faculty and groups at your school.

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The local chapter may ask you to complete a potential candidate form. This form is specific to each chapter of the NJHS. A majority vote from the faculty council after an evaluation will determine your entry into the NJHS. If you have questions about membership, ask the local chapter adviser or find the local chapter information through your middle school’s website or other online avenue. The national office will not have information on your local chapter’s admission guidelines.

National Junior Honor Society Benefits

There are many National Junior Honor Society benefits. To maintain your affiliation with the NJHS and continue to reap those benefits, continue to keep your grade point average above the minimum requirement for membership.

Seek out areas where you can be a leader. Think outside of the box and locate areas of need within your school or community. For example, tutoring students who are struggling can show initiative and leadership qualities. Approach a faulty member and ask about locations where you might be able to hold free tutoring classes on the school’s grounds for students in need. If there is an abundance of leftovers from lunch, find out if there is a program in place to disperse surplus fresh food to the community. Create a recycling program or other beneficial platform. The National Junior Honor Society volunteer hours vary from chapter to chapter, so make sure you are completing enough hours to maintain your membership.

Be prepared to qualify for the National Honor Society once you reach high school. The membership in NJHS does not guarantee membership in NHS. For that, you will need to re-evaluate your goals and grades when it is time for you to fill out the National Honor Society application.

History of NJHS

The National Junior Honor Society was established in order to recognize middle school students who were performing above and beyond their peers both in and out of school. Membership means that a student is recognized for her studies, leadership, character and service.

The NJHS came after the original honor society created by school principals, but it has become one of the more successful school programs across the country. Just eight years after the National Association of Secondary School Principals created the National Honor Society, they moved to honor exceptional middle school students with the creation of the National Junior Honor Society in 1929. It quickly swelled to 1,000 chapters within a year and became one of the country’s leading education-based children’s groups.

About the Author

Kimberley McGee is an award-winning journalist with 20+ years of experience writing about education, jobs, business trends and more for The New York Times, Las Vegas Review-Journal, Today’s Parent and other publications. She graduated with a B.A. in Journalism from UNLV. Her full bio and clips can be seen at www.vegaswriter.com.