Golden Key International Honour Society

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Golden Key National Honor Society)
Jump to: navigation, search
Golden Key International Honour Society
Golden Key.jpg
Motto To enable members to realize their potential through the advancement of academics, leadership and service.
Formation November 29, 1977
Type Honor society
Headquarters Atlanta, Georgia
Over 2 million[1]

The Golden Key International Honour Society (formerly Golden Key National Honor Society) is an Atlanta, Georgia-based non-profit organization[2] founded in 1977 to recognize academic achievement among college and university students in all disciplines.

Golden Key has over 400 chapters at colleges and universities in eight countries: Australia, Canada, India, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, The Bahamas and the United States.[3] Membership into Golden Key is offered, for a fee, to undergraduate and graduate students recognized to be among the top 15% of their class by GPA[4] Lifetime membership is given to those who pay a one time $95 USD membership fee.


Golden Key was founded by a group of undergraduate students and faculty members at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia, on November 29, 1977.

In 2001, the society modified its name to "Golden Key International Honour Society." According to statements by leaders within the society, the spelling of "Honour" was chosen to observe the more globally accepted spelling.[5]

Some honorary members include Dolly Parton, Stephen King, Tim Tebow, and Tupac Shakur.[6]


Golden Key offers a number of services for its members. These include résumé and graduate program assistance, career planning and opportunities, leadership opportunities, networking, and member discounts. Golden Key offers hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in scholarships and awards to its members along with a variety of other opportunities, both academic and career.[7] Golden Key's core values include community service and its chapters are involved in a wide variety of volunteer projects in their local communities. The Golden Key International Honour Society was among 10 organizations to receive the In2Books Community Service Award in 2010.[8]

In 2014, Golden Key announced its global service initiative, SPARK a Change. The mission is to impact and improve the lives of at-risk youth (ages 0–17) through literacy, education and real-world preparedness. Golden Key members are service minded individuals who strive to make a positive difference in their communities and around the world. This initiative helps the next generation to discover and unlock their potential. By 2017 (the 40 year anniversary), this initiative aims to raise $40,000, participate in 400,000 volunteer hours and affect 400,000 lives.[9]

Golden Key is an active member of several organizations. Organizations Golden Key is involved with include:

Golden Key resigned from the Association of College Honor Societies in December 2013.[10] According to the Association's newsletter dated February 10, 2014, the resignation came "after a series of on-going discussions and correspondence." ( The Association of College Honor Societies is the nation's only certifying agency for college and university honor societies. (See Honor society)

Golden Key is governed by an international Board of Directors.[11] Its volunteer advisory structure includes the International Leadership Council,[12] the Council of Advisors[13] and the Council of Student Members.[14]

Fund distribution[edit]

Questions were raised over the amount of money spent on Golden Key's scholarships.[citation needed] Articles in the University of British Columbia student newspaper, The Ubyssey, examined the society's finances and scholarship practices. It was noted in The Ubyssey that in 1997 salaries, management and general expenses totaled almost 47 percent of the total expenditures. The society is continually increasing their scholarship offerings and currently awards hundreds of thousands of dollars annually in scholarships and awards. All financials since 2008 have been made publicly available on their website and are audited by third party auditors.

Local Chapters[edit]

Local chapters receive funding from Golden Key headquarters and may use this money as they see fit to run various events, networking activities, professional development initiatives and community service projects. A variable amount (minimum $100) of additional funds are allocated for in-house chapter cash scholarships. The amount given for these local scholarships is based on the number of members inducted, which is then distributed by the local chapter in accordance with their determined criteria. Some criteria may include active participation in chapter service projects and meeting attendance. Most chapters divide their available chapter scholarships into three awards: one each for Sophomore, Junior and Senior students.


External links[edit]