IV takes on DC


Submitted photo

IVCC PTK members (from left) Travis Sauers, Nicole Stevenson, Monica Leonard, Kaitlin Raineri, Trevor Finnan, Brandon Miller and faculty advisor Eric Schroeder pause to play with Magpi (held by Finnan) in U.S. Rep. Adam Kinzinger’s office. Members of IVCC’s Rho Omega chapter of Phi Theta Kappa had a meet and greet with Kinzinger’s staff during their recent trip to Washington D.C. for the PTK national convention. The group spoke with Kinzinger’s staff members about education, retirement, immigration and reaching across party lines.

Trevor Finnan, IV Leader Columnist

In the early hours of April 7, IVCC’s very own Rho Omega chapter of Phi Theta Kappa boarded a red-eye flight headed to the organization’s huge annual national conference.

This year’s national conference, entitled “Nerd Nation” was held in Washington, D.C., home of the nation’s capital.
Due to student organization budget cuts made at IVCC to help pay for renovations to the Student Life area, the Rho Mega chapter was uncertain for most of the year if they were even going to be able to attend this event.

As spring semester came around and the day of departure drew closer, they knew something big had to be done if they wanted to be able to afford this expensive trip. They realized that they needed to launch a huge fundraising campaign if they were going to come up with the necessary money, and that’s exactly what they did.

After three months of hosting bake sales, raffles, and other fundraising events, they finally got the news they were hoping for: they had officially raised enough money to send five of their officers to Nerd Nation.

Joining these officers on the trip was general member Kaitlin Raineri, who was to be recognized at a national level for her accomplishment on being named a PTK New Century Scholar.

This scholarship is awarded to only a handful of kids in the entire nation, and Rho Omega is proud to state that this is the second year in a row that a member of their organization has won this award.

When Rho Omega landed in D.C., they immediately headed to the conference, where they met up with over 4,000 other PTK members attending the event.

Together, they participated in various workshops and breakout sessions, whose topics ranged from leadership techniques, to team building, to becoming more active in their community. They even got the opportunity to sit in on speeches given by some of the most inspiring people on the planet.

Being one of those lucky officers that got to attend, I can say firsthand that these speeches were by far the best part of the trip. The information and advice shared during these talks was life-changing, and made all that hard work it took to get there totally worth it for me.

On top of all that, the Rho Mega chapter even went home with an award, being recognized on a national level for the work they put into their five-star chapter plan.

Every officer that attended the event had reached five-star membership.

Rho Omega also made time between all of this to go visit our congressional district’s representative Adam Kinzinger’s office, where they talked to his staff and took a tour of the Capital building.

As the school year ends and the officers must retire from their positions, they can hold their heads high knowing that their term was a complete success.

If you or someone you know may be interested in joining PTK and attending one of these events, talk to any one of us featured in this picture, or see our faculty advisor Eric Schroeder for details.