Honors Programs

Jackson College offers an honors curricular program and the opportunity to join the world’s largest, most prestigious, oldest honors society for community college students.  The PTK Honors program provides you with enhanced educational opportunities, optimal class sizes, innovative curriculum, individual advising and unique opportunities for internships, scholarships and transfer with four-year colleges and universities. As an honors student, you can help shape the program for the students who follow. You will enter into a community of students, faculty and administrators committed to the shared ideals of academic excellence, leadership, intellectual curiosity and mutual respect.

commencement students in cap and gown

PTK Honors @ Jackson College

Sometimes students need more – greater challenges, deeper discussions. The Honors Program @ Jackson College enriches the classroom experience. Students will explore in-depth topics in their majors and programs of study (pathways) with other students who seek a greater academic challenge.

PTK Honors @ Jackson College

Phi Theta Kappa

Phi Theta Kappa is an international honorary society for students of two-year colleges.  The society is comprised of more than 1100 chapters internationally.  Each chapter is given its own Greek name.. Phi Theta Kappa is centered around four hallmarks: Scholarship, Leadership, Fellowship and Service.

Phi Theta Kappa

Program Comparison

Areas of Comparison Phi Theta Kappa PTK Honors @ Jackson College


The mission of Phi Theta Kappa is to recognize academic achievement of college students and to provide opportunities for them to grow as scholars and leaders. The Honors Program at Jackson College supports and challenges academically motivated students, emphasizing critical thinking, research, and leadership/civic responsibility.


Founded in 1918, PTK is the oldest, largest, and most prestigious honor society serving two-year college students around the world. JC has had a PTK Chapter for 55 years. Last year JC’s PTK Chapter was ranked 3rd out of 1,300 Chapters. PTK Honors @ Jackson College is newly launching in Fall 2020, with a streamlined curriculum.


  • Membership in Phi Theta Kappa is offered to eligible students by invitation only.
  • Eligibility is based on 3.5 or above GPA and completion of 12 credit hours at Jackson College.
  • Cost: $95.00 Lifetime membership for scholarships for associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degrees
  • Dual-enrolled students can become PTK members if they meet eligibility requirements.
  • 1,350 Phi Theta Kappa National and International Chapters at Community Colleges with over 3.5 million members
Application and Interview Process by Honors Staff at Jackson College; Active Recruitment by Student Services, Navigators’ honors advising, pre and post orientation.

 Cost: $30.00 at time of Honors Admission for Provisional Membership in Phi Theta Kappa.  There are no other costs associated with student enrollment in the honors program and curriculum.

Upon completion of 12 credits and a JC GPA of 3.5+, honors students are awarded full membership in Phi Theta Kappa.


Membership recognizes students’ academic success

  • Phi Theta Kappa Golden Key Membership Pin
  • Phi Theta Kappa Membership Certificate and ID Card
  • Recognition during college induction ceremony
  • Official seal of Phi Theta Kappa placed on your college diploma*
  • Notation of membership on your college transcript*
  • Recognition by wearing Phi Theta Kappa commencement regalia during college graduation
  • Press release announcing your academic achievement

Membership empowers students with a competitive edge

  • $37 million in scholarship opportunities for members only
  • Opportunity to be published in Phi Theta Kappa’s anthology, Nota Bene
  • Opportunities to develop research and servant leadership skills by participating in Honors in Action programming in local chapter
  • Opportunity to become part of a network of nearly 3 million fellow scholars and servant leaders on more than 1,300 campuses worldwide
  • Personalized letters of recommendation for scholarships and employment
  • Special benefits and member discount offers from Phi Theta Kappa Corporate Partners such as GEICO and Bank of America
  • As a member of the PTK Honors @ JC program, students are provided an honors level education with optimal class sizes, innovative curriculum, enhanced advising, and unique opportunities for internships, scholarships, and transfer agreements with four-year universities.
  • Honors students are committed to the shared ideals of academic excellence, leadership, intellectual curiosity, mutual respect and shared accountability. Through active participation and engagement in the honors curricula, students will help shape the new PTK Honors @ Jackson College program.
  • Capstone team research projects will culminate the PTK Honors experience.

Time Commitment

The time a member devotes to Phi Theta Kappa is a matter of individual choice. Some members choose to devote many hours to chapter activities; others may not participate at all. Chapters cannot require participation in activities or withhold membership benefits based on lack of participation. Students are required to take 15 credit hours in designated Honors Courses to receive an Honors degree.

Success Rates

90 percent of Phi Theta Kappa members complete their associate degrees and/or transfer to a four-year college.  (Currently, only 42 percent of Michigan students complete their associate and/or transfer.)