Alpha Phi Sigma is the only National Criminal Justice Honor Society for Criminal Justice Majors. The society recognizes academic excellence of
undergraduate, graduate students of criminal justice, as well as juris doctorate and related majors.
HISTORY OF UMES GAMMA OMICRON CHAPTER OF NATIONAL ALPHA PHI SIGMA (APS)
Alpha Phi Sigma is the National Criminal Justice Honor Society. The UMES Gamma Omicron Chapter was founded in response to perceived students’ reasonable needs. In fall semester 2000, LaTrese’ White (Founding President) and Dr. Emmanuel Onyeozili (Founding Advisor) submitted a request for the formation of the UMES chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma. The faculty of Criminal Justice Department approved the request and agreed to allow the formation of the honor society specifically for high-achieving criminal justice and related majors. Dr. Onyeozili was subsequently voted as founding advisor to the honor society which kicked off in full the following semester. The major argument favoring this decision is to encourage academic excellence through positive competition since membership is based on academic performance. Furthermore, local chapters already exist in most other universities.
Alpha Phi Sigma, is the only recognized Criminal Justice Honor Society and is a member of the National Association of College Honor Societies. The UMES Gamma Omicron is a Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma International which in turn, is a national organization that coordinates the activities of Criminal Justice Honor Societies in all four-year colleges and universities nationwide. In 1976 Alpha Phi Sigma was adopted and designated as National Criminal Justice Honor Society by the Executive Board of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS), and is allowed to hold its annual national meetings during the ACJS annual conferences.
The mission of Gamma Omicron Chapter which is in line with that of Alpha Phi Sigma National includes:
- Promotion of high scholarship among UMES Criminal Justice and related Majors actively engaged in collegiate preparation for professional services. The minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 (and 3.2 in Criminal Justice courses) requirement for membership is aimed at emphasizing this point.
- Keeping the members abreast of the advances in scientific research.
- Elevating the ethical standards of the criminal justice professions and to establish in the public mind, the benefit and necessity of education and professional training.
- Actively engaging in collegiate preparation for professional services
- Engaging in charitable and community service projects aimed at improving mankind and relationship among students.
Alpha Phi Sigma is a service organization participating in many community service projects both on and off campus. We pledge to maintain this honorable ideal.
A BRIEF OVERVIEW ON ALPHA PHI SIGMA
Undergraduate: students for regular membership must have a declared major, minor or equivalent in criminal justice or related field; have completed three full time semesters or equivalent; must maintain at least a 3.2 overall GPA on a scale of 4.0 and a 3.2 GPA in their criminal justice courses. The student must also have completed a minimum of 4 courses within the criminal justice or related field. Associate membership may be accepted with lesser condition, but will not be entitled to honor regalia and life membership until they meet the stipulated criteria.
Graduate: students must be enrolled in a masters or Ph.D. program in the criminal justice or related field; have completed a minimum of 12 semester hours of graduate work, or equivalent; and have a 3.4 GPA or higher, on a scale of 4.0 in criminal justice or related field work.
In September, 1941, Dr. Vivian Anderson Leonard was asked by the president of Washington State University if he would accept the directorship of a Police Science Academic Program at Washington State. Dr. Leonard accepted the offer and became responsible for developing a four year curriculum which would lead to a Bachelor’s Degree in Police Administration.
Upon his arrival at Washington State, Dr. Leonard began to realize how important it was that a Police Science Honorary be established. The purpose of this honorary would be to promote excellence in scholarship and performance. In January 1942, Dr. Leonard met with seventeen Police Science majors at Washington State and Alpha Phi Sigma was established. Glenn Hill was elected as the first president and appointed a committee to draft the first Constitution and By-laws.
The goals of Alpha Phi Sigma are Academic excellence, community service, educational leadership, and unity.
During its initial years Alpha Phi Sigma experienced only limited growth, but on March 24, 1976 in Dallas, Texas, the Executive Board of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences voted unanimously to designate Alpha Phi Sigma as the National Criminal Justice Honor Society. At this time, Alpha Phi Sigma had only fourteen chapters; however, since then, Alpha Phi Sigma has continued to grow and prosper at a very rapid rate, and there are now over two hundred and fifty chapters.
Over the years the National Presidential Slate Officers have been located at several Universities across the country, such as, Washington State, Midwestern State University, Eastern Kentucky, Texas Woman’s University, Marshall University, Tarleton State, Florida International University, Fairmont State College, and currently (for the first time) at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
Academy of Criminal Justice Science Affiliation
At the 1976 meeting of the Academy of Criminal Justice Science in Dallas, Texas, the Academy recognized Alpha Phi Sigma as the National Criminal Justice Honor Society. Since 1978, Alpha Phi Sigma has held its national conference in conjunction with the annual ACJS meeting. The Academy’s continued support of Alpha Phi Sigma serves to enhance Alpha Phi Sigma’s purpose-the recognition of scholarly achievement in the field of criminal justice.
Member of the Association of College Honor Societies
The Association of College Honor Societies was organized October 2, 1925, by a group of college and university teachers, administrators, and representatives of a few well-established honor societies. Its objective was then and still is, to consider problems of mutual interest such as those arising from the confusion prevailing on college campuses concerning the character, function, standards of membership, multiplicity, and undesirable duplication of honor societies; to recommend action leading to appropriate classification or elimination; and to promote the highest interest of honor societies. Alpha Phi Sigma was granted membership by the association of College Honor Societies in 1980.
Registration and Annual Dues
The initial application/acceptance fee is $100 for Associate, and $150 for Regular membership. This cost covers the application processing, induction and/or other membership materials, as well as the initial $20 yearly dues. Each year thereafter, national dues of $20 will be assessed each member. Additionally, a $50 annual Chapter due is required for each chapter operation and registration with the National Headquarters of Alpha Phi Sigma (this annual fee is waived if up to six members of a chapter attended and participated in events at the annual national conference). All fees and other dues once paid to APS are non-refundable.
According to UMES regulations, an active organization must complete 75 hours of group community service per year. Hours completed also determine which organizations are eligible for office allocation in the Student Services Center (SSC). Since one of the main ideals of Alpha Phi Sigma as a national organization is community service, each member is required to complete 15 hours of community service (in addition to the organizational hours) per semester in one of the central locations selected or approved by the chapter. Failure to complete your community service hours may result in ejection from the organization and/or our refusal to order the members graduation honor regalia. Ejected members will not ordinarily qualify for Life Membership nor the Alumni Chapter membership.For in-depth information on the organization’s activities, please catch us on the web at www.alphaphisigma.org
CHAPTER BYLAWS: ( Click here)
For National/Chapter Membership and UMES Gamma Omicron Chapter information, please contact the Advisor:
Dr. Emmanuel Onyeozili
For UMES Gamma Omicron Chapter events, contact the President:
For detailed Alpha Phi Sigma National information, please contact Headquarters, or visit APS National website at:
National Headquarters Nova Southern University UPP-N-155
3301 College Avenue
Fort Lauderdale, FL. 33314 Tel: 954-262-7004
National Executive Director: Director@AlphaPhiSigma.org