On the Hour

NHS service hours are due by April 15, a depending on the member, it’s either a stroll or a scramble to the finish line.

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photo by Jess Daninhirsch

24 NHS service hours are due April 15th, and members have various approaches to the deadline.

Sally Cho, Co-Editor-in-Chief

As spring settles in, a lot of deadlines and events come to seniors’ minds–National Decision Day, Prom, and graduation. Amongst all these, another deadline is on the minds of some seniors: The NHS service hours deadline.

For members of National Honor Society, 24 service hours are due by April 15 in order to be listed as an NHS member in the commencement program and receive an honor cord.

“I have not completed all of my hours yet, but I will be getting my final two by volunteering with homework clubs this week,” senior Emma Scott said.

Some students have had their hours completed long before the soon-approaching deadline. 

“I have gotten all of my hours,” senior Matthew Koah said. “I got them all done at the beginning of the year because I knew I wouldn’t have the motivation to finish at the end. I think I finished around mid-December.”

Opportunities to gain hours range from service activities and events offered through NHS, such as marathons or holiday shops, to any outside hours a member can find. However, outside hours are limited to 14 hours per member.

“I enjoyed the Kennywood Coaster Race the most,” Scott said. “We volunteered at Kennywood to hand out water, snacks, and medals to people running their 5k.”

NHS also holds and provides opportunities for multiple donation drives a year of all sorts that members can participate in to earn service hours.

“I like opportunities like blood drives and food drives,” senior Cassandra Pultorak said

I would tell future NHS members to try to get all of their outside hours over the summer, since that is more than half of the requirement and it removes stress during the college application season.”

— Emma Scott, NASH senior

However, some students will not be able to complete their 24 service hours by the deadline.

“The inside hours are very limited to after-school volunteering when I personally have activities after school every day,” said a student who asked to remain anonymous. “I have more than 40 outside hours, but since they have a limit, I cannot use them for NHS, which is very frustrating.”

NHS advisor Mrs. Oliver recommends starting early, even before the start of the school year, to avoid stress or cramming before the deadline.

“​As soon as you’re inducted, take advantage of any advertised NHS service opportunity,” she said. “We also encourage new members to give back to the community over the summer and turn those in for credit.”

Scott, who followed the latter advice, echoes these sentiments.

“I would tell future NHS members to try to get all of their outside hours over the summer, since that is more than half of the requirement and it removes stress during the college application season,” she said.

Koah believes more service opportunities are offered at the beginning of the year in general.

“There were a lot of available opportunities in the fall,” he said.

Senior Gloria Wang encourages future NHS members to not forget the original message of the organization and service in general amidst the scramble and stress to complete the required hours.

“Ultimately, it’s not that relevant whether or not you get the hours done. Volunteering is meant to be good for the community you’re serving, not the honor cord,” she said.