Sigma Zeta LogoSigma Zeta National Science and Math Honor Society

A national undergraduate honor society to encourage and foster scholarly activity and recognize academic scholarship in the natural and computer sciences and mathematics


Pre-Convention Communique from Executive Director Dr. Jim Hall

January 23, 2012

Dear Sigma Zeta Friends:

I hope your spring semester has begun well. Our 2012 National Convention is just two months away, March 29-31, 2012, but before talking more about the Convention I wanted to share the good news that one new school, Concord University in Athens, West Virginia joined us as the Gamma Beta chapter in October 2011, and that three (or more!) new schools will be joining our organization soon. The national officers have approved the charter applications of: the Master's University, Santa Clarita, CA, Concordia College, Moorhead, MN, and Franklin Pierce University, Rindge, NH. Please join the National Officers in extending a friendly Sigma Zeta welcome to these new colleagues!  News and pictures from these new chapters will be posted on our website after their charter ceremonies.

Our organization experienced another major milestone last month when Sigma Zeta presented its first ever student research awards. Our inaugural winners are Christina Nowicki of Bethel University, Madeline Knott of Millikin University and Kelly Commons, also of Millikin University. See our website,, for the titles of their research proposals. Congratulations to these young scientists! We hope to hear presentations about their research at the March 2012 or spring 2013 conventions.

Here at the National Office the spring semester will be unusually busy with the normal duties getting ready for the meetings at the convention, preparing for (and traveling to) the installation of three or more new chapters and preparing certificates and mailing pins and medallions to the growing number of new Sigma Zeta members. Last spring my student assistant and I processed about 500 of the year's total of almost 800 new memberships during the last week of March, the four weeks in April and the first week of May. We did our best to get orders to chapters in time for the student installation ceremonies, despite the fact that many of the orders were sent to us less than two weeks before the ceremonies. I am going to have to insist that orders be sent to us earlier this spring, or there is a good chance that we will be unable to fill the orders in time for the installation ceremonies. I know I am stating the obvious, but students' GPAs will not be changing between now (assuming fall grades have been posted) and the end of the semester, so each chapter should already know (or quickly be able to find out) which students are eligible for membership. Please do not delay in setting a firm deadline by which students who are eligible and interested should pay their membership fees, followed quickly by the advisor emailing to the National Office the spreadsheet with the new members, even if the installation ceremony isn't until near the end of the semester. The spreadsheet on which new memberships are sent to the National Office allows the chapters to specify the date, so the actual ceremony date can be printed on the certificates, even if the order is processed weeks before.

  • The National Office cannot guarantee timely delivery of certificate and jewelry requests received after March 1 - our campus has spring break the week of March 12-18; the National Convention at the end of March will also interfere with processing orders, as will the Easter holiday in early April. Final exams begin on our campus on April 30.
  • New orders will not be processed from chapters with an unpaid balance. Reminders will go out in the next couple of weeks to those few chapters which have unpaid balances.
  • The National Office may not be able to process certificate and jewelry orders after my student assistant graduates on May 5. My schedule in the summer is not set at this point, so please don't count on orders being processed during the summer, which begins May 5.
  • Please give the National Office a three week lead time on all orders.



The Alpha Gamma chapter at Malone University, Canton, Ohio will be our Convention host. The Alpha Gamma chapter and their advisors, Drs. David Hahn and Jim Glasgow, hosted the 2005 and 1997 National Conventions and are experienced travelers, attending each convention for the past several years. They are working hard to organize a very good meeting, including field trips to the Cleveland Zoo, the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Great Lakes Science Center and a hike in Cuyahoga Valley National. More Information about the meeting including lodging suggestions, abstract submission and registration forms, and field trip selections are posted on our web site, , at the 2012 Convention link, and that is the best place to look for the latest updates. You will see at this webpage that the contact for our host chapter is:
Dr. David Hahn, , Malone University, 2600 Cleveland Avenue NW, Canton, OH 44711.

Both poster and oral presentation abstract submissions are welcomed. Please note that both the Registration Form and the Abstract Submission Form are on the website and have important details, including deadlines for submission. Included with this mailing and on the website is a copy of the rubric that judges will use to help choose the award winners for the best poster and oral presentation. Advisors, please distribute this rubric to your student presenters and their faculty mentors.

Enclosed with this letter and soon to be posted on the website is the 2012 Convention mileage allotment for each chapter, based on round trip mileage to Canton, OH and calculated at the rate of $0.40/mile. Mileage has been determined using the website Check these amounts against your calculations and please contact me if you feel there is an error. The allotment listed is for 3-5 attendees. For 1-2 attendees, the reimbursement is the cost of travel, not to exceed the amount for 3-5 attendees. Double the amount listed for 6-10 attendees, triple the amount for 11-15, etc…. Mileage checks will be available at the convention.

All of the National Officers encourage your chapter to attend this meeting to meet your colleagues from other chapters. These conventions are always a good combination of professional and social activities. We also encourage your chapter to consider nominating one of its members for the Honor Award and to consider nominating your chapter for the Founder's Cup award. Information and application procedures for both of these awards are found at the Forms link and at the 2012 Convention Page at




Jim Hall, Executive Director