Seventy-five years ago, Thomson High School was one of 34 schools in the nation to charter the National Beta Club. Earlier this month, four students from Thomson High School traveled to Spartanburg, S.C. to represent the school in the organization's anniversary celebration.
"It was an honor to be among one of the schools to have its club the whole time. It was really nice," senior Amanda Acosta said.
Amanda is the treasurer/project chair person of the THS beta club. Other officers of the club - Crystal Reese, Haley Tam and Sara Swan - also represented the school, along with their teacher/sponsors, Amy Proctor and Kelly Flanders.
Each of the charter schools was invited to the celebration, but only one other school had a student attend.
"It was so cute, because there was only one other student there. So, all the people who held positions with the National Beta Club came up and wanted to talk to our girls," Ms. Proctor said. "It was so exciting to see the kids be a part of it, because it's their club."
Amanda said their unique situation made her appreciate her sponsors more and feel as if the sponsors cared about them as students.
"We got to meet a lot of people with the National Club. We even got to see the original members. That was pretty cool," junior president Haley Tam said. "The trip was a lot of fun, and I want to thank our sponsors for taking us."
There are only four of the original members left, and two attended the anniversary celebration, Ms. Proctor said. The event was a "big reception with hors d'oeuvres" and THS received a crystal trophy engraved with their charter date - November 1934.
There are currently approximately 65 students in the THS Beta Club, according to Ms. Proctor. Students must maintain a 90 average and a certain number of community service hours to remain eligible for the club. The motto of the national club is "Let us lead by serving others."
Amanda said the club offers her the opportunity to serve the community "in many different capacities," and Haley said it gives her "that extra push to be a good example and do what I need to do." Ms. Proctor has been the commander in chief for five years. She said the students meet monthly and work on participation with the American Heart Association, Relay For Life, and the Ferst Foundation. Last month, they made valentines and passed out to residents at the local nursing home.
"I love it. I love watching what the kids can do. They just amaze me with how they excel," she said. "It amazes me how dedicated they are. When I was young, it took time for me to learn how to become a good student. And to see them with those skills right now in their lives is so refreshing."