Political Science Honor Society at TAMU-CC earns National Recognition as Best Chapter, Best Advisor

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – Islanders are receiving national recognition for their efforts to stimulate scholarship and intellectual interest in political science.

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi’s Alpha Delta Eta chapter of Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honor Society, recently earned the Best Chapter Award for 2021-2022. The group’s faculty advisor, Dr. Sanne Rijkhoff, TAMU-CC Assistant Professor of Political Science, was also awarded Pi Sigma Alpha’s Best Chapter Advisor for the same term.

“There are no words to express how proud I am of my students,” Rijkhoff said. “The Best Chapter Award reinforces students’ scholarly accomplishments and shows the strength and quality of the political science major here at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi.”

Pi Sigma Alpha consists of nearly 850 chapters nationwide, and this year, 23 chapters and five advisors were recognized for their achievements in leadership, commitment, and dedication. The Island University was the only university in the Texas A&M System to receive the national recognition this term.

According to Pi Sigma Alpha, honorees were selected based on each chapter’s annual report. The universities were then placed in different categories based on their undergraduate enrollment numbers. As part of the award, the Alpha Delta Eta chapter received an award of $500 while Rijkhoff was awarded $200.

Dr. Sanne Rijkhoff, TAMU-CC Assistant Professor of Political Science

Dr. Sanne Rijkhoff is the faculty advisor for both the Political Science Club and Political Science Honor Society at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi. She was recently awarded Best Chapter Advisor for her work in the Alpha Delta Eta Chapter of the National Political Honor Society Pi Sigma Alpha.

“I hope our students know that what they have done here is extraordinary,” Rijkhoff said. “This group of students remained active despite the pandemic, which shows the passion and determination of these students, and frankly, of myself. This award confirms that what we do matters.”

Brooke Free ’22, who earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, said her experiences as a member of Pi Sigma Alpha granted her opportunities to grow as a professional and a scholar.  

“I deeply appreciate the guidance Dr. Rijkhoff provided,” Free said. “It was because of her that I was able to present at the Southwestern Political Science Association and Pi Sigma Alpha conference, and the reason I was able to do it with confidence. She really uplifts her students and pushes them to be their best.”

Isabela Huerta ’21, TAMU-CC’s Pi Sigma Alpha president from 2020 to 2021, says being a part of the chapter increased her knowledge and appreciation for political science.

“Dr. Rijkhoff is a phenomenal mentor and leader. I truly don’t believe the chapter could have won the award without her leadership,” said Huerta, who earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. “I hope that the chapter continues to actively encourage civic engagement because it is incredibly important for college students to be politically knowledgeable and active.”

As part of the national awards, the Alpha Delta Eta chapter will be featured in Political Science Today magazine, the official publication of the American Political Science Association.