AGS club provides merit for high GPA

Alpha Gamma Sigma honors society seeks members, encourages academic excellence

By Karla Juarez, Advocate Staff

The Greek letters Alpha Gamma Sigma represent excellence, knowledge and wisdom.

Contra Costa College’s AGS Honor Society gives students the chance to improve academically while actively engaging in the community.

“We work together for one common goal, which is to help students reach their full potential as a student and community server,” Maria Rodrigues, AGS member, said.

In 1925, the head Administrator of Fullerton Junior College, Dr. William T. Boyce founded AGS, Patricia Herrera said.

“The idea was to promote a statewide junior college honors scholarship that mimicked what was being done at the universities,” Herrera said.

AGS promotes scholarships for its members, helps build leadership skills and connects people.

Rodrigues said, “Being in AGS has been a rewarding experience.

It has allowed me to connect with students from other majors and backgrounds and gain insight about other career possibilities outside my intended major.”

AGS club president Xu Haosen said members attend a regional state convention every semester and receive a gold scarf and recognition at graduation.

“Another cool activity is attending conventions. This semester we are going to Los Angeles,” Haosen said.

Rodrigues said, “It has allowed me to step out of my college student shell to build relationships with students outside of the classroom.”

Two annual conferences, state and regional, bring together members from other honor societies around California to receive transfer information and even scholarship opportunities, Haosen said.

AGS member Mai Pham said, “I have been a member of AGS for two semesters and it has helped me a lot.

We do voluntary work, and the more voluntary work you do (gives you the chance ) to go to conferences for free.”

In order to be an official member of AGS, students must complete 10 community service hours, have a minimum 3.00 GPA, enrolled in at least 12 units and pay for their membership and gold scarf, Herrera said.

Students who receive financial aid through EOPS can have their membership and gold stole waived, she said.

Herrera said students who do not have a 3.00 GPA still have the opportunity to join the club but must talk with an AGS member.

She said one of the benefits AGS members receive is a 15 percent discount in tuition when they transfer.

The list of universities that offer the discount is available for AGS members. Hawaii University is one of the listed universities.

Herrera said the number of members vary per semester.

Last year AGS had about 25 students, yet some years they had 10 and other semesters had 40 members, Herrera said.

“Every semester the club loses its members when they transfer to UCs and CSUs. “It’s a good problem to have,” she said.

AGS club participates in activities like groundwork around campus and around the community as well.

They go on field trips and hikes as part of their fun activities.

Herrera said, “The club’s goals for every semester boil down to increasing membership, increasing volunteer efforts, fundraising for scholarships and conferences, promote our leadership abilities and increase campus awareness of our club,” Herrera said.