Delta State University’s Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa held its Spring 2015 Initiation Ceremony on Monday at the Sillers Chapel and welcomed eight new members.
The initiates included a group of seven students and one faculty member. ODK, a national leadership honor society, recognizes college students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumni.
This year’s initiates include: Kelsey Jane Elling (social work, San Diego, Calif.); Melissa Claire Griffin (social work, Decatur, Miss.); Todd Joseph Hendrix (psychology, Cleveland, Miss.); Jessica Lauren Hood (biology, Gore Springs, Miss.); Marc Antony Leggett (HPER, Gautier, Miss.); Lindsey Anna Pardue (entertainment industry studies, Clinton, Miss.); Jack Greggory Tharp (biology Flora, Miss.); and Cora S. Jackson, (faculty, social work Shaw, Miss.).
“ODK is a special leadership society because it’s not only an honorary group, but one that is based on leadership, involvement and participation,” said Wayne Blansett, vice president of Student Affairs. “ODK members remain involved after initiation and make valuable contributions to the quality of life on the Delta State campus.”
ODK was founded Dec. 3, 1914 at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Va. In the tradition of the idealism and leadership of George Washington and Robert E. Lee, the founders stated that leadership of exceptional quality and versatility in college should be recognized.
They also believed representatives of all phases of college life should cooperate in worthwhile endeavors, and that outstanding students and faculty members should meet on a basis of common interest, understanding and helpfulness.
The motives that guided the founders sprang from the desire to bring together one body for the general good of the institution, leaders from all parts of the university community.
The Delta State University Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa evolved from the local leadership honor society, Omicron Delta, which was organized in 1967 under the guidance of ODK members William Cash, the late Jack Gunn, the late W. F. LaForge, and other interested faculty and staff members.
Since its establishment, the Delta State circle has recognized campus leadership among students and faculty, and has especially emphasized the value of free exchange of ideas among campus leaders and between student and faculty members of the circle.