Following a long and detailed application process, The American School in Switzerland (TASIS) has gained approval to launch a Cum Laude Society chapter later this spring. The first school in Switzerland to be granted this honor, TASIS will become the world’s 383rd chapter of the prestigious Society, which was founded in 1906 to honor superior scholastic achievement in secondary schools. The remaining chapters are located primarily in independent schools in the United States, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Canada, England, France, and Spain.
“It’s a great honor to be selected,” said High School Academic Dean Dr. Mark Abisi, who will serve as the Chapter Leader and build a small team of faculty members to round out the leadership committee. “The Society thoroughly examined all aspects of the School and determined that we were fit for membership.”
Unlike the National Honor Society, which primarily works with public high schools in North America and strongly considers a student’s leadership, service, and character, the Cum Laude Society places its greatest emphasis on a student’s scholarly contributions to his or her school.
The Executive Committee of the Cum Laude Society provides the following criteria for student selections:
|The definition of what constitutes an academic honor record and the determination of how to select members are left to the discretion of the individual chapter. Chapters shall be free to elect members who have demonstrated academic excellence in accordance with the philosophy and policies governing their individual schools. In the broadest sense, the Regents assume chapters will elect to membership only students who have demonstrated good character, honor, and integrity in all aspects of their school life. Since there are other agencies for the rewarding of achievement in areas such as social services, extracurricular activities, citizenship, and athletics, Cum Laude elections should be based on academic excellence, in keeping with the original purpose of the Society.|
Only the top decile (based on GPA and strength of schedule) of each graduating class at TASIS will be considered eligible for membership. Following the conclusion of this year’s first semester, Dr. Abisi and the leadership committee will identify current members of the Class of 2017 who may be worthy of induction later this spring. Near the end of this year, they will take a close look at elite scholars from the Class of 2018 and consider inducting them along with the group of seniors who make the cut. These rising seniors would then serve as chapter members for all of their final year at TASIS, with additional spots opening up for some of their classmates early in 2018.