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UofGH’s Alpha Phi Sigma welcomes new members at year-end celebration

Photo of Dr. Glenn Hanna and Leah Patton-JanssenPhoto courtesy of Vic Duarte/Dr. Glenn Hanna

After two years of meeting remotely, the University of Guelph-Humber chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma had the opportunity to gather in person to welcome 13 new members at their annual year-end ceremony.

Alpha Phi Sigma is an international honour society for criminal justice students. Founded in 1942, the society promotes academic excellence, community service and leadership and brings together like-minded individuals from law enforcement and legal perspectives. 

UofGH’s chapter, Phi Epsilon, hosted a variety of virtual events for Justice Studies students throughout the past year. Their events explored topics including wrongful convictions, mental health court diversion, youth in conflict with the law, sex work legislation, organized crime, and human trafficking. 

At their year-end ceremony, the chapter inducted 13 new members and recognized members inducted remotely in 2021. Justice Studies faculty member Laura MacDiarmid was also inducted as a new faculty advisor. With a research focus on community justice alternatives, punishment, and the sociology of emotions, MacDiarmid was warmly welcomed to the chapter.

Chapter President Abigail Ashley congratulated the inductees on their admission to Phi Epsilon, one of only two Alpha Phi Sigma chapters in Canada. 

“I stand here surrounded by so much potential. This room is filled with people that I know are going to do incredible things,” said Ashley, a third-year Justice Studies student. “We chose this program and to be a part of Alpha Phi Sigma for the same reason: our dedication to pursuing excellence and to the criminal justice field.”

Fourth-year student and Phi Epsilon’s Vice President of Communication Leah Patton-Janssen was announced as the winner of the Regina B. Shearn Scholarship. Named after the executive director of Alpha Phi Sigma, the award is based on academic performance, leadership and service. Patton-Janssen was recognized with a certificate from Alpha Phi Sigma headquarters as well as a cheque for US$2,000.  Patton-Janssen, who will be graduating from UofGH this spring, received admission to multiple universities in the United Kingdom before accepting a position in the Master of Global Crime, Justice and Security program at the University of Edinburgh.   

For both current and new Alpha Phi Sigma members, the opportunity to meet face to face after many virtual meetings was the perfect way to cap off the year. 

“It is a privilege to attend a school that offers membership to an international criminal justice honour society,” said newly inducted chapter member Noah Ramsammy. “The Induction Ceremony was the highlight, and a much-needed break from studying for exams. I appreciate all the hard work the chapter executives put into it.”