From volunteering to eating Spanish cuisine to attending cultural activities, Spanish National Honors Society is a center for students invested in a variety of activities. While the club definitely has merit with universities and resumes, the value of this society goes beyond looking good on a college application or having a cord on graduation day. It’s about service, as well as coming together to celebrate the Spanish culture.
The goal of SNHS is to be “a group of dedicated students interested in the Spanish language, Spanish culture, and community service. As SNHS members, [they] attend cultural activities, participate in language competitions, and attend/volunteer at community events.” Their primary focus is to volunteer for the Hispanic, as well as the Raleigh, community.
SNHS is prevalent throughout high schools all over America. Each different group, or “chapter” has a different name relating to Spanish or Portuguese culture. Leesville’s chapter is known as “Capítulo Frida Kahlo”. Frida Kahlo, a famous Mexican painter known for painting self portraits, was an inspiration to Hispanics and Americans alike. Throughout her paintings, she is known to use symbolic imagery. Even today, her paintings are relevant through her message: be yourself.
Señora Sollie, the teacher advisor for SNHS, explained why they choose Frida Kahlo to be the face of Leesville’s National Spanish Honors Society. “That was [Ms. Weber’s, the previous SNHS advisor] favorite artist, and they encourage us to have a chapter name that has something to do with Spanish history, ” said Sollie.
This year, SNHS is inducting over 60 students, while losing about 30 seniors. Each inductee has several requirements to stay in the club, such as continuing to take Spanish classes at Leesville, meeting the required number of service hours, and maintaining an average of a B or above in current Spanish classes.
Kelsey Holt, a sophomore and a new inductee, is excited about the volunteering opportunities that is offered through the club. “I am really excited about volunteering and getting hours because I am able to use and apply my knowledge of Spanish. I am also able to bond with other people who are enjoy the Spanish culture and language as much as I do,” said Holt.
SNHS offers a variety of different volunteering opportunities, ranging from visiting a Spanish-speaking church and attending a service to taking the returning members are expected to volunteer for 10 hours. Most members of SNHS agree that volunteering is one of the best aspects of the club. “One of my favorite memories about SNHS is at Christmas time, when we go to Whispering Pines and sing Christmas carols and do crafts. I know the kids really enjoy it, ” said Sollie.
Bo Byers, a senior and president of SNHS, originally joined SNHS as a booster on his college resume. However, being in the club shaped him as a person, as well as his appreciation for the Spanish language. “[SNHS] has helped me develop many leadership skills and helped me become more comfortable speaking in front of people in Spanish, and then it has helped me learn more about the Spanish language and culture,” said Byers.