Student Voice

Global Change Through Local Action: Why I Became an Adviser

My students fell in love with serving their local community and it made them part of something much bigger.

When the National Honor Society (NHS) adviser at my school retired after 15 years, she turned to me with the request that I lead her NHS students. She admitted it would take a ton of time and even more energy, but that it would be the most rewarding job of my life.

She was right. (more…)

A Place to Belong: Why I Became an Adviser

Celebrating scholarship is just as important as any other school club, and NJHS provides that space.

Twenty-one years ago, my principal asked me to advise the current National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) chapter at my middle school. I had never done it before, and it was trial by fire—luckily I was able to attend a workshop and found great resources to get me started. (more…)

Carrying on the Tradition: Why I Became an Adviser

I knew the importance of NHS from my days as a student, and participating as an adviser is even more rewarding.

When I first came to my high school, I was asked to be a National Honor Society (NHS) adviser. I jumped at the chance, as I remembered being an NHS member myself and how it connected me to the community. I knew I wanted to make an impact with our chapter and put us on the map in our school—many of the students didn’t know what NHS was, let alone want to join. Now, 12 years later, we’re ingrained in our school’s culture, and younger students aspire to become members. (more…)

In Times of Crisis: Why I Became an Adviser

No one could have foreseen our frightening circumstances, but having an NHS chapter made all the difference.

I have been a National Honor Society (NHS) adviser for three years. Actually, it’s more accurate to say that I have been the sole adviser for that long—I had previously been co-advising our chapter with my wife for some time after the former advisers stepped down. In that time, we have grown to a 160-member group out of 2,100 students; we are one of the largest high schools in our semi-rural area. When disaster struck on April 20, 2018, we needed the support of all 160 members. (more…)

School Safety Advocacy From a Student’s Perspective

Following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL, which claimed the lives of 17 students and educators, advocates around the country organized a national movement demanding change to better protect our schools and communities from gun violence. Leading that movement are student survivors of the shooting joined by thousands of young people across the country.

The NASSP Student Leadership Advisory Committee joined those efforts, organizing advocacy events and actions to honor the lives of the Stoneman Douglas victims and to call for policy change. Here are testimonials about that advocacy from one of the students on the committee and one of the committee’s adult advisers: (more…)

G.R.O.W. Into Leadership

Guest post by Omékongo Dibinga

“Leadership ain’t for the lame, don’t take it in vain
Time to rethink your position, understand why you came.”

I often recite these two lines from a poem I wrote on leadership when I speak to student leaders around the world. I share this quote to underscore two points: First, leadership is not for everyone. Though everyone can be a leader, leadership is a calling that few people answer and, therefore, it must be carefully considered. Second, leaders must always be thinking about why they chose to be a leader, and whether they still have the capacity or even the desire to lead.

(more…)

How I’m #MakingGlobalChange

Guest post by Alexis Tisby

The NASSP Student Leadership Advisory Committee launched a global citizenship initiative in November 2016, and Alexis Tisby is one of the initiative’s global change ambassadors. She is from Lakewood, WA, and a senior at Harrison Preparatory School who has completed over 260 hours of volunteering and service in her community. In the future, she plans to major in computer science and minor in theater and art while obtaining her private pilot license.

She encourages others to join in on this global citizenship initiative and make global change. Local efforts count! As she shares, projects don’t have to be done on a global or international scale—the things you do locally can still contribute to making a global impact.

(more…)

Make a Video to #ThankaPrincipal

National Principals Month (NPM) happens every October and is a month-long celebration of school leaders and what they do to help students succeed. We ask that you and your students join the celebration by participating in activities such as planning a celebration for your school leader, sending them e-cards, and posting about them on social media using #ThankaPrincipal. (more…)

Don’t Even Think About It—10 College Application Essay Don’ts

Guest post By Marilyn G.S. Emerson

Are your students prepared for the upcoming college application season? Read the post below for expert advice you can provide to help them with what is perhaps the most stressful part of the application: the essay. In a recent National Honor Society (NHS) virtual college application essay writing workshop, Marilyn G.S. Emerson, a certified education planner, detailed strategies for students to discover their voice in writing. As a follow-up, Marilyn shares 10 common pitfalls that your students will want to avoid in preparing their college application essay.

Admissions representatives read hundreds of thousands of college essays. While there is no magic formula that makes for the perfect application, there are certain things students should avoid at all costs. Here are 10 essay “don’ts”: (more…)

College Application Essays: What a Principal Should Know

Guest post by Patrick O’Connor

One of the most interesting parts of being a school administrator is how many people expect you to know everything, and know it off the top of your head. This happened all the time when I was an assistant principal. In one quick walk down the front hallway, a parent would ask me what time the ninth grade volleyball game was next Thursday (6:00), a teacher would ask me when supply orders were due (last week), and a student would ask me what English teacher they should take next year (nice try). (more…)