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Jan 24
PTK promotes awareness/acceptance of body art


Shelley Heredia, of Moreno Valley, Calif., sets up a body art display on Monday in the Learning Resource Center at NPCC. It’s part of a national Honors in Action project.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. 

Just ask members of the North Platte Community College chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. They set up displays of tattoos, piercings and other body modifications on Monday in NPCC's Learning Resource Center. 

It's all part of a bigger, national project, Honors in Action, which is designed to engage honors students in actions that foster student success. The project also helps fulfill PTK's mission of recognizing and encouraging scholarship in a lively exchange of ideas and developing leaders who serve their communities. 

According to PTK, the Honors in Action projects give students the chance to apply learning and practice real-world problem-solving. 


Samantha Gill, of LaSalle, Colo. and Summer Malsbury, of North Platte, both PTK members, join Dr. Glynn Wolar, PTK advisor, in looking over a display Monday in the Learning Resource Center at NPCC. The college’s PTK chapter created the display in an attempt to raise awareness and acceptance of body art.

All chapters start with the same Honors Study Topic, which this year is, "How the World Works: Global Perspectives." They then pick one of eight themes to research and create an action project around. The NPCC chapter chose the theme, Beauty and Vulgarity. 

"It's the first time our PTK chapter has ever done an Honors in Action project," said Amy Taft, chapter president. "We chose to target something often considered taboo, body modification, to show that it is a form of art and to bring awareness and acceptance to the practice." 

The group researched eight scholarly articles regarding the subject, jointly reviewed the findings, then set up the displays, featuring photos of both NPCC student tattoos and piercings and current trends in body modification. College faculty, staff and students have the option of filling out a survey after viewing the displays to voice their opinions about them. 

Amy Taft PTK.jpg

Amy Taft, of North Platte, looks over a body art display on Monday in the Learning Resource Center at NPCC. Taft is president of the college's PTK chapter, which is participating in an Honors in Action project.

That feedback, combined with the PTK chapter's research and a review will be posted on "The Yard Rake," NPCC's student-led webzine. The information will also be submitted to the Hallmark Awards program for recognition during NerdNation, PTK's annual convention. 

"This project has been really fun," said Taft. "We really just hope it will promote acceptance of everyone. Part of being in PTK is going the extra mile. Now, we just have to wait and see if we accomplished that."

On a side note: 

Phi Theta Kappa credits Honors in Action projects with developing the following: 

  • Awareness of the importance of seeking multiple perspectives to enhance understanding and improve decision-making
  • The ability to draw research conclusions and develop ideas to make a difference
  • Effective planning capabilities to initiate action
  • Intentional and purposeful efforts to grow leadership skills
  • Understanding of the need to involve others and work together
  • The ability to lead and manage self and others to motivate, overcome obstacles, perform in complicated environments and accomplish goals
  • Skills to assess progress, adjust to circumstances and measure results quantitatively and qualitatively

Heather Johnson
Area Communications Specialist

Heather produces and distributes press releases for the college. She began work at MPCC in 2014. Prior to that, she spent five years as the news director/web manager for Eagle Radio in North Platte. From 2009-2014 she worked as a reporter/photographer for The North Platte Telegraph. Heather has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Chadron State College.

Brent L. Cobb
McCook Community College News Bureau Coordinator​​​