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Memorial Junior High School welcomes new National Junior Honor Society members

LANSING, Ill. (May 9, 2024) – Memorial Junior High School inducted its newest members into the Magnus Meritus Chapter of the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) on May 6. The induction ceremony honored 41 exemplary students for their commitment to the organization’s pillars: scholarship, character, leadership, service, and citizenship. 

District 158 Superintendent Dr. Nathan Schilling said 41 students is the largest number the chapter has inducted in a year. 

The sixth, seventh, and eighth grade inductees arrived in an orderly line to take their seats while “Copland: Fanfare for the Common Man” played. (Photo: Kinise Jordan)

Mary Kelly, District 158 school board President, and Denise Jones Williams, school board Vice President, came to support and congratulate the inductees. 

“First a word to the parents, grandparents, friends, and extended family members who are here this evening. I’d like to offer my sincere congratulations to you on the accomplishments of your inductee,” she said. “It is very clear that you value and are committed to your child’s education.”

Going above and beyond

In 1929, the NJHS was founded by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) to create enthusiasm for scholarship, stimulate a desire to render service, promote leadership, encourage responsible citizenship, and develop character in secondary school students. 

This year’s inductees have demonstrated a commitment to the organization’s four pillars: scholarship, character, leadership, service, and citizenship. (Photo: Kinise Jordan)

“This organization recognizes students who demonstrate distinction in and out of school in the areas of scholarship, service, leadership, character, and citizenship,” said Dr. Keli Ross, Principal at Memorial Junior High School.

“You will see these characteristics reflected in each of the students we honor today through their consistent display of a positive attitude, a good work ethic, and a genuine concern toward making a difference to their community,” she continued. 

To qualify for membership in the NJHS, students must showcase exceptional academic achievement, outstanding character, and dedication to service.

“The 41 inductees we celebrate tonight have demonstrated hard work, good character, as well as intellect in the classroom and beyond,” said Dr. Ross. “The students that you see before you represent excellent role models who understand the concept of leading by example.”

Dr. Schilling said many inductees volunteered at Lansing Clean Up Day on April 22. 

Induction ceremony

Current chapter members lit six candles representing wisdom, scholarship, citizenship, service, leadership, and character before the inductees were officially accepted as new members.

A candle-lighting ceremony took place to represent the five pillars of the NJHS, and wisdom. (Photo: Kinise Jordan)

The inductees were required to recite the NJHS society pledge led by Tera Maddox, a math teacher at Memorial Junior High School. 

Each new member signed their name in the chapter book along with previous inductees. (Photo: Kinise Jordan)

During the ceremony, the students were called individually to sign their names in the chapter’s book and receive a certificate showcasing their status as members of the Magnus Meritus Chapter of the NJHS. They also received a single red rose to give to someone special to them who was present at the event. 

After signing their names in the chapter book and receiving their certificate, inductees were presented with a red rose to present to a person special to them in the audience. (Photo: Kinise Jordan)

Dr. Dave Kostopoulos, Director of Curriculum and Assessment at District 158, congratulated the inductees and advised them on the future. 

“You will have many opportunities to make choices that will strengthen and grow these pillars. Don’t ever compromise your morals, values, and work ethics for someone else or their ideas, stick to your own,” said Dr. Kostopoulos. “Also, continue to be the great person you have already become and continue to strengthen upon your five pillars so that you become unshakeable and unbreakable in all your future endeavors, congratulations.”

Sixth grade inductees

  • Victoria Apata
  • Cristian Delgado
  • Gabriella Dixon
  • Jillian Doszak
  • Nathaly Martinez
  • Etinosa Osaretin
  • Isaiah Poole
  • Sophia Sandoval
  • Janiya Turman
  • Jubilee Williams

Seventh grade inductees

  • Samantha Avila
  • David Bennett
  • Francisco Cervantes
  • Mia Del Real
  • Koi Dortch
  • Jade Graham
  • Malia Greene
  • Nyla Griffin
  • Malik Harb
  • Lorrae James
  • Loriana Johnson
  • Alyssa King
  • Jori Mathews
  • Mia Medina
  • Gabriela Mondragon-Cruz
  • Malcolm Smith
  • Kenzee Stahl
  • Layla Wallace
  • Amari Zawadzki 

Eighth grade inductees

  • Chanel Allen-Anderson
  • Brooklyn Bullock
  • Romina Calderon
  • Keilani Coussey
  • Leylah Jackson
  • Kyle Jones
  • Jayden Maxey
  • Lilianna McKenna
  • Nevaeh Taylor
  • Isabella Vargas
  • Heaven Wiley
  • Nyla Wilson

Memorial Junior High is located at 2721 Ridge Road in Lansing.


Kinise Jordan
Kinise Jordan
Kinise Jordan brings local experience and a long list of journalism skills to her work with The Lansing Journal. She understands the need for reliable, factual information in equipping people to build community. An Audio News internship with WBEZ honed her interviewing skills and her sense of timing and deadlines. A native of Calumet City, Kinise is familiar with the interplay of local government, local schools, and local businesses.


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