Today there was a National Honors Society meeting in our school after school.
NHS is supposed to be an organization dedicated to (from the website) "Scholarship, Service, Leadership, and Character".
(From the website,) Members must be morally upright, set an example for peers, and perform service for the betterment of the community without regard to money.
Yet this is not what I saw on display at today's meeting. All I saw was talk about money, moolah, and more bucks.
For one, this is the first year that the NHS at our school has instituted a $10 membership fee. Why? Have operating costs skyrocketed so much that fundraisers explicitly for the club (i.e. the Spring Cookie Dough sale) can't cover them? If so, that's understandable. If not, I'm wondering if NHS is any longer about service, charity, or being non-profit.
While the next thing is nothing new, I am still puzzled as to why the coordinator and executive board members require those participating in the Mini-Walk for the homeless to bring another non-member student and that those non-member students should also pay fees.
First of all, what's wrong with just bringing a friend who doesn't want to go to the Walkathon in DC? It's great to encourage friends to also come to the Walkathon, but I think mandating friends to come for this is going a bit too far.
Second, why must a non-member friend come too? Again, encouraging people to bring friends and donate to the homeless is great, but a lot of people I know who are going are already in NHS. What's wrong with walking with them?
While all of the funds go to the actual Walkathon, I am still suspicious about this sort of authoritarian attitude towards this event. It's supposed to be fun, but it's starting to look less like that now.
Next, the attitude displayed by the coordinator and by the professional liaison for fundraising was a bit disappointing. Rather than focus on the target of the fundraising (i.e. Kenyan schools and villages), the focus was just on the fundraising itself and the prizes. Why?
The only other beef I have is with the computer drive in that the computers have Windows on them. My problem is that they are quickly going to break down, and the recipients of these computers will have very little skills to fix them and will probably have to pay exorbitant prices to computer professionals to have the job done. This, of course, is only based upon what I know about the program; I'm unsure of all of the details, so this is a story for another day. This is just a preliminary thought (i.e. about the old computers).
Thus, it seems to me that the NHS is being motivated more by profit than by actual community benefit. It's making me doubt the philosophy behind the organization.
I'm planning to get all of these questions answered tomorrow before giving the checks for NHS fees and for the Mini-Walk. If the answers are satisfactory, I'll stay. If not, sayonara, NHS!