Phi Theta Kappa National Honor Society Selects College Social Science Professor as a 2010 Faculty Scholar

PHILADELPHIA, April. 13, 2010 —Margaret Stephens, an associate professor of Social Science who specializes in Earth Science and Geography, was selected as one of 24 Phi Theta Kappa Faculty Scholars for 2010.

All of the faculty scholars serve as advisors to their local Phi Theta Kappa chapters. The scholars will facilitate student discussion groups at the 2010 International Honors Institute, June 14-18, at Chapman University, Orange, California. They will lead groups of 15 to 20 honor students in seminar discussions of the issues presented throughout the week. Stephens has worked with the College’s Rho Upsilon Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa since May 2008.

The faculty scholars were selected based on demonstrated excellence in teaching, as well as on their applications, which included their thoughts on the current honors study topic, “The Democratization of Information: Power, Peril, and Promise.”

“Today’s information revolution brings with it the potential for good and for harm. Democracy is protected to the extent that there is no divide. We must ensure that all participants have access to accurate information and the education enough to make sense of it,” Stephens said.

A former Peace Corps volunteer, Stephens is known as a strong advocate for student activities that encourage leadership, especially in environmental conservation. She has a BS in Natural Resources and Biological Science from Cornell University, an MS in Appropriate Technology and Energy Management for Development from the University of Pennsylvania and an MS in Educational Psychology with a specialization in Science Education from Temple University. She has been employed at the College since 1993, when she started as a faculty science specialist in the College’s Learning Lab.

To prepare for their roles as faculty scholars, Stephens and the other scholars participated in a conference from Feb. 3 through Feb. 7 at Phi Theta Kappa’s Center for Excellence in Jackson, Mississippi. The conference was sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Headquartered in Jackson, Mississippi, Phi Theta Kappa is the largest honor society in higher education with 1,250 chapters on college campuses in the United States and its territorial possessions, as well as in Canada, Germany, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, and the United Arab Emirates.