Selection Process

Nomination and selection into Alpha Sigma Nu should be governed by section 3.3 of the Society's bylaws.  Within these parameters, Chapters determine the best process for their school. Below is a compilation of some of the processes at place across our Chapters. 

*Find practical tools for addressing diversity and inclusion in your selection process here.

Click the links below to view the selection process of a particular school.

Canisius College     Fairfield University     John Carroll University     Loyola Marymount University     Regis College Toronto     Saint Louis University     Seattle University     Spring Hill College     University of Scranton    

Canisius College

Letters of invitation go out from the respective deans' offices to all undergraduates and graduate students who meet the top 15% criterion. With the letter is an application form.

Applicants send in the completed form along with an essay of no more than two pages on the values of Alpha Sigma Nu and how they relate to the applicant's life. Applicants also have a letter of reference sent to me or the dean.

The undergraduate student Chapter members meet in plenary session and go through the applications one by one. In preparation for the meeting, the Chapter President and I try to read all the applications and the student members read between 10 and 12 applications each so that each application is read by at least 4 people.

The list decided on is passed on to the dean for her approval and then on to the president for his approval and additions, if there are any.

Then we send out the acceptance and rejection letters.

For the graduate student applications, I meet with the respective deans and go through them with him to determine those to be admitted.

Then we send the list to the president and, after that, inform the applicants of our decision.


Fairfield University

As the applications are received, a master list is made and the names are placed in the order received.

Each member of the Candidates Committee is expected to read a certain number of applications per week. These applications are kept on file and may be read at any time between 8: 30 and 4:30 Monday through Friday. The applications are not to be removed from their location.

Each member is given a worksheet with the names for the week listed. We use a grading system from 0 to 4, with 4 being the highest. Some members choose to grade activities and essay separately and then take an average. Others prefer to grade the entire application. Whatever is one’s preference is acceptable as long as they come up with one figure (i.e., 1.0. 3.6, etc.) While GPA is to be considered, we do not put too much weight in that area -- scholarship got these applicants where they are --we tend to put much more emphasis on activities (both school and community) and content of the essay.

There will be a meeting scheduled every week during the month to go over the essays for the week. Usually the meeting takes place somewhere between 4:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., whichever is convenient for the majority. As long as the essays are graded, a member does not have to attend every meeting; however, attendance is preferable. If someone cannot make a meeting for any reason, they should leave their grading sheet with a designee so their grade can be totaled with the rest of the committee.

We all decide on figures at the time of our first meeting. For instance, all applications which total 30 and above are accepted, those totaling 23-29.9 are put on hold, and below 23 are denied (if there are 10 people reading). If there are less than 10 people reading, the numbers would go down correspondingly. The people who are put “on hold” will be deliberated at our final meeting and wither accepted or denied, based on the number of inductees we can induct in that year.

Confidentiality must be stressed. Whatever is discussed at our meetings cannot be discussed outside of the meeting. Keep in mind that the Dean of Students and the Deans of the Schools must give their approval of our final list, so no one is considered accepted until that approval is received.


John Carroll University

From the first year JCU held their induction in the fall. Spring induction left too little time for new members to learn the organization or to become acquainted with older members. Thus little had been accomplished.

Shortly after the start of the fall semester, in early September, we asked the Office of Information Services for a list of all juniors with a GPA of 3.5 and above. (We did not request a similar list of seniors, on the theory that their names had been on the list last year when they were juniors. I’m thinking that this is an omission we should remedy in the future.)

Invitations to apply for membership were sent to all juniors on the list, along with instructions to include an essay telling of their scholarship, loyalty, and service; and to obtain a faculty member’s recommendation or endorsement, to be sent to my office. The potential applicants were given a deadline of October 3rd. Since that was a Friday, applications arriving on October 6, the following Monday, were still acceptable.

As the applications and nominations came in, I entered them into the ΑΣΝ Excel spreadsheet template. Thus, when the selections were made, I was able simply to take the unsuccessful candidates out of the sheet, transferring them into a second Excel file, for our use in writing the “Sorry, but please try again next time” letters to them.

Once the list of acceptances was complete, I emailed it to our JCU President for his information and approval. And once that approval was given, I emailed the list to the Central Office at Marquette.

We are planning an Induction Mass and Dinner for Sunday afternoon on campus. That day comes at the start of the last week of classes. Final exams will occur in the week following that. Our hope is that we will be able to form the new (and old) ΑΣΝ students into a cohesive whole, engaging in one or more group activities in the spring semester before they all depart for the summer.


Loyola Marymount University

At the end of the Fall semester, Faculty are asked to nominate students they feel fulfill the criteria for ΑΣΝ. In January, the Registrar provides a list of students with a 3.5 GPA and above. The coordinator checks with Student Affairs and the Center for Service and Action to document all activities the students are engaged in on campus and beyond. We also keep a record of students who received faculty nominations the year before.

In early February, a gathering of the membership of ΑΣΝ takes place, the purpose of which is selection of new members on the basis of all the information provided by the campus, and on the basis of any information the current members may have of the students whose names are listed by the Registrar.

Following the selection meeting, the Chapter Adviser meets with each Dean to get the approval of the list for his/her college, before taking these to the President.

We mail letters of invitation to the students once all the approvals are in place.


Regis College Toronto

We use a modified version of nomination by the dean. As Chapter Adviser, I obtain from the registrar the list of students in each of our programs who are halfway through their requirements and whose grades place them in the top fifteen percent of their programs. I then take each of these lists to the appropriate program director, and ask them to select two or three nominees who embody the values of scholarship, loyalty and service (given our total student numbers, I know that getting two names in each program will leave me with the final four percent). I put these names together and submit the list to the dean for his approval. The students whose names appear on the list, once approved, are sent a letter inviting them to allow their names to stand; this letter includes a blank form asking details of their history of scholarship, loyalty and service – we don’t treat this as an application or nomination form, but merely as a record. If the students return the form, they have accepted the nomination by the dean.


Saint Louis University

SEPTEMBER 8 - Send letter to Registrar requesting mailing labels and list: All undergraduates with 60 hours and 3.6 GPA, in College of Arts And Sciences, College of Public Service, School of Nursing, School of Allied Health Professions, School of Business and Administration, School of Social Service, Parks College, and School of Professional Studies. Labels and list should be alphabetical, by schools, and with local addresses.

Send letters to deans of graduate and professional schools inviting them to nominate students from their schools who meet the criteria. Deadline 10/24.

SEPTEMBER ? - Prepare letters and information to be mailed to undergraduates when labels and lists are available. Include letter of invitation and application form, essay instructions, and AΣN Information Sheet from National Office. When labels arrive, prepare envelopes and insert prepared letter and information. Separate on-campus and off-campus letters, and mail.

Send Spain Campus mail via International Student Office (check International Student Office for lists of other students studying overseas and make necessary arrangements for their mail).

SEPTEMBER 20 - Obtain copy of University enrollment statistics by school/college from Office of Institutional Study.

Decide on names of Honorary members and obtain Presidential Approval.

OCTOBER 24 - As the applications arrive, the information is entered into the computer. When the deadline arrives, all applications are given to the Coordinator.

Applications are sorted by schools, then by junior/senior classification. Determine number of juniors/seniors eligible in each School/college according to the 4% requirement, using Enrollment Statistics.

OCTOBER 28-29 - Members of the Selection Committee (made up of officers, Chapter Adviser, and representatives of schools not included in the officers) meet in the office of the Coordinator to read the essays, marking them Yes, No or Maybe. Final determination is made by the Chapter Adviser and Coordinator. List of invitees, along with lists of Graduate and Professional Deans’ nominees is given to the secretarial staff for letters of invitation or regrets.

NOVEMBER 7 - Mail invitation and regret letters. Invitation letters to honoraries.

DECEMBER 9 - Deadline for acceptance and payment of dues. Endorse and deposit checks.

JANUARY 14 - Prepare list and all required information on order form. Double check for accuracy. Send electronic list to National Office.

Obtain President’s and Adviser’s signatures on order form. Determine amount to be sent for memberships and medallions. Write and send check with list and information.

JANUARY 20 - Send invitation and information about the induction to the deans. Include list of their inductees, to be reported in their pre-Commencement program.

FEBRUARY 16 - Send induction info to candidates, including honoraries, with reservation form. Contact last year’s inductees, inviting them to attend, and asking if they wish to order a medallion for commencement.

MARCH 21 - Mass and induction ceremony, followed by reception.


Seattle University

After we meet in the fall to review the Handbook, we request a list of students from the Registrar's Office who are about 3.8 or above (we have quite a few) to identify from each School and College the top students. We select about twice the number we will ultimately accept (not all apply when invited) and ask them to write a personal statement about their academic aims, service experience, etc., based on their reading of ΑΣΝ goals. Applicants also ask a faculty member to write a letter of recommendation on their behalf.

We usually then meet after Christmas vacation, during which time our local officers have read all submitted materials. The officers, sometimes with help from other chapter members, evaluate the material based on commonly agreed norms, explicitly stated and distributed to each reader.

From this process, we identify the allowed quota of qualified inductees and notify them (and the others) of the decision. We do not require attendance at the Induction Ceremony in order to join. The President of the university usually submits to us the names of 2 or 3 persons whom he would like to honor with membership.

As it has worked out in practice, our Induction Ceremony usually takes place in Spring Quarter.


Spring Hill College

In early January, the Registrar provides a list of seniors and juniors ranked according to GPA. After the top 15% have been identified, each student is sent a letter inviting him or her to apply for membership in Alpha Sigma Nu and explaining briefly what this honor society is all about. Enclosed is an application form, which includes a resume or list of all activities and also a 3-page essay reflection on how the student understands and has practiced the ideals of scholarship, leadership, and service.

A selection committee is formed, consisting of the President and Vice-President of the Chapter, the Chapter Adviser, and two other faculty members, usually faculty who are members of Alpha Sigma Nu. The selection committee reads all applications and each member ranks their top 10 juniors and seniors; the committee then meets to finalize the list of 4% of each class who will be invited to become members. This averages to 8 juniors and 8 seniors. In the three years we have used this method, there has been remarkable consistency in the names selected by the members of the committee. Just a couple of names need to be discussed.

All remaining folders are then forwarded to the President who makes his additional selections.

All accepted members are then notified by letter.


University of Scranton

Obtain from Registrar the lists of students in top 15% on GPA, separately for juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Juniors are those having completed 60-89 credits; seniors 90+ credits; graduate students at least 18 graduate credits.

Mark the list to show current members (so they do not get re-nominated).

Solicit nominations from current ΑΣΝ members, including faculty, staff, and student members. These members receive the list of students in the top 15%, along with a cover letter from the Chapter President and Chapter Adviser. The cover letter outlines the criteria for ΑΣΝ membership, requests that CVs be submitted along with any statement from the nominator, and gives deadlines for submission.

Nominations are also solicited, by way of the same cover letter, for honorary members.

Chapter coordinator and Chapter Adviser compile the nominations.

The student officers review the nominations and make selections of student nominees. The Chapter Adviser provides guidance on the selection process.

From the nominations for honorary membership, the ΑΣΝ Advisory Group makes selections. (This group consists of 5 faculty and 4 staff members; the Chapter Adviser chairs the group.)

Student selections are sent to the deans of the respective colleges for review.

Student and honorary selections are sent to the University President for his review.

The Chapter Adviser adjusts the lists as needed, based on reviews by deans and the President. The penultimate lists of inductees are prepared.

A letter is sent to persons on the a/r lists inviting membership in ΑΣΝ. The final list of inductees consists of those accepting membership.

Notes on the Process:   We do not call for self-nominations. We have tried that in the past and were not happy with the result. Current members (faculty, staff, students) are very conscientious about making nominations. Our inductees pay the membership fee. The Chapter does cover the fee for those who cannot afford it. We have not had a problem getting acceptances from persons invited to membership, although some individuals require multiple follow-ups.

We call for nominations in October and hold the induction ceremony in late March to early May.

At present the undergraduate GPA lists are for all colleges combined. We are considering doing this separately by college.