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UHV biology student organization joins national honor society

June 22, 2013 at 1:22 a.m.

Kelsey junekUHV biology society

The University of Houston-Victoria's biology student organization has been added to a national honor society.

Beta Beta Beta Honor Society for biological sciences, a national society for students dedicated to improving the understanding and appreciation of biological sciences, has granted UHV a chapter and selected the name Nu Gamma Nu for the group. It previously was called Phi Zeta.

The chapter invitation was welcoming news to Kelsey Junek, a senior biology major from Rosenberg, who will serve as the first Nu Gamma Nu president.

"It looks really good on our transcripts to be part of a national organization," Junek said. "It also brings more research-oriented opportunities. If our members perform independent research, they can submit a paper about their findings to TriBeta's biology journal. The authors of the top papers are invited to the national conference."

BIOS is a peer-reviewed, undergraduate scientific journal run by TriBeta. The ability to be published was one of the reasons UHV applied to join TriBeta, said Siva Somasundaram, UHV director of undergraduate biology studies and the faculty adviser to Nu Gamma Nu.

"By joining this national organization, it enables students to increase their leadership skills, publish their research in the BIOS journal and assist in placement for graduate studies through TriBeta's national network," he said. "This is a positive step for students to advance their career in medical sciences."

Phi Zeta began in spring 2011. Organization activities are designed to stimulate interest, scholarly attainment and investigation in the biological sciences, as well as to promote the dissemination of information and new interpretations among life science students.

Since its founding in 1922, TriBeta has accepted more than 200,000 people into lifetime membership. There are more than 550 chapters nationwide.

A national representative from TriBeta visited UHV in November. The organization's executive committee met to consider applicants and recommended adding UHV. The decision was ratified by a vote of area chapters.

Last school year, the organization had about 25 members.

Nu Gamma Nu is recruiting new members for the fall.

The organization is open to biology majors in good academic standing with at least a 2.75 overall GPA and a 3.0 biology GPA. Students must have completed at least one upper-level biology class before being granted full membership.

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