The induction was Pellissippi State’s inaugural Gamma Beta Phi class—it was also the biggest community college class in the 40,000-plus-member honor society.
“Pellissippi State had the largest community college induction in the entire organization,” said Kevin Fillers. Fillers, himself a Pellissippi State alumnus, is assistant national executive director of Gamma Beta Phi.
“Gamma Beta Phi sets out to recognize and enrich the lives of academically excellent students who are willing to make a commitment to improving their community through service projects.”
Wilburn, who is pursuing a career in social work, is set to earn her associate’s degree in May.
“I was honored to be named to Gamma Beta Phi,” she said. “It’s the first time I’ve ever been involved in an honors society.”
The Gamma Beta Phi Society is dedicated to promoting education and providing community service to colleges and communities. Pellissippi State’s first Gamma Beta Phi induction took place in October 2014.
The college’s Gamma Beta Phi chapter is one of several student clubs that offer the opportunity for students to give back to the community and be honored for their academic achievements.
“When students get involved in a club, they feel connected to Pellissippi State for years to come,” said Kim Thomas-LaRue, director of Student Life. “Our goal is to lead students to connect and engage on campus so that their academic experience is enhanced.”
Wilburn is active in Student Life and is a member of the college’s Student Activities Board, which plans campus events for students. She says both organizations keep her busy on campus, but she loves opportunities to get to know people and to help.
“It’s an honor to do that: to help out around campus as much as we can,” said Wilburn. “It’s busy, but it’s fun and good to be involved and to help students.
“I started at another community college in Nashville before moving back home and coming to Pellissippi State, but that ended up being the best thing for me. Pellissippi State has helped me start out well on my academic path.”
After Wilburn graduates in May, she plans to transfer to Tennessee State University, where she will continue working toward a bachelor’s degree in social work.
“I love to help people. Knowing that you made an impact and that you changed someone’s life for the better is always a rewarding feeling.”
For more information about Pellissippi State, visit www.pstcc.edu or call (865) 694-6400.