Cumberland University received the Presidential Award of Excellence from Omicron Delta Kappa National Leadership Honor Society for its significant level of accomplishments within the 2019-20 school year.
The criteria for the Presidential Award of Excellence include meeting the minimum standards for the Circle of Distinction and Superior Circle awards, as well as hosting a circle driven signature event on campus and participating in the National Day of Service or equivalent event.
Executive Director of Academic Support and Assistant Professor of Leadership Studies, Dr. Sheridan Henson, acts as the Circle Coordinator, which is the faculty member entrusted with advising, recruiting, inducting, and managing the Cumberland Circle.
“With 317 Omicron Delta Kappa circles across the United States, it is a great honor for the Cumberland Circle to be one of only six named a recipient of the Presidential Award of Excellence,” said Dr. Henson. “It takes five years of consistent achievement to earn this recognition, and it reflects CU’s focus on maintaining high standards and leading by example. It also serves as a reminder that, although we are small, we can still make an impact on the national level.”
The Cumberland Circle is traditionally small in number. The Circle can only invite a total of less than 3 percent of the undergraduate class, and those invited must be sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduate students demonstrating leadership potential in the top 35 percent of their respective classes.
Founded in 1914, Omicron Delta Kappa granted a charter to the Cumberland Circle in 1996 with many of its charter members still serving the university community. Honorary members include Congressman Jim Cooper, University Trustee Dr. Michael Spalding, Senator Mark Pody, University Dean Eric Cummings, and Senator Marsha Blackburn.
About Omicron Delta Kappa:
Omicron Delta Kappa Society, the National Leadership Honor Society, was founded at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia on Dec. 3, 1914. A group of 15 students and faculty members established the Society to recognize and encourage leadership at the collegiate level. The founders established the O∆K Idea—the concept that individuals representing all phases of collegiate life should collaborate with faculty and others to support the campus and community. O∆K’s mission is to honor and develop leaders; encourage collaboration among students, faculty, staff, and alumni; and promote O∆K’s ideals of scholarship, service, integrity, character, and fellowship on college and university campuses throughout North America. The headquarters are located in Lexington, Virginia.