Virginia Military Institute’s Omicron Kappa chapter of Sigma Delta Pi, the National Collegiate Hispanic Honor Society, was named an honor chapter for its outstanding activities in academic year 2022–23, an award that was bestowed to only 12 chapters nationwide in 2023. This is the first time in the chapter’s 30-year history that VMI has earned this distinction, and Sabrina Laroussi, Ph.D., faculty advisor to the chapter and associate professor of Spanish in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, was instrumental in earning this award for her student group.
In addition, Laroussi has been named this year’s recipient of the Lucy F. Lee Award, which is granted annually to a chapter advisor for exemplary initiative in encouraging and assisting with chapter activities.
Since arriving at VMI, Laroussi has aimed to organize Sigma Delta Pi events that not only touch on Hispanic culture but also ones that interest and involve a broader audience. “All of our events focus on collaboration and inviting others to join in the mission of Sigma Delta Pi. One example is our Life, Culture, and Society Film Series, which was launched in 2021 with the VMI Building BRIDGES Service Club and Preston Library.”
Each summer, the 634 chapters of Sigma Delta Pi nationwide are asked to submit an annual report detailing their numerous activities and projects from the academic year. Based on these reports, the National Executive Committee chooses approximately 10-15 honor chapters annually. This recognition is based upon the caliber of chapter projects that reflect the Sigma Delta Pi mission of honoring excellence in the study of the Spanish language, contributing to cultural understanding, and upholding the goals of the society.
Sigma Delta Pi was founded in 1919, with its national office at the College of Charleston in South Carolina. Since 1966, it has been a member of the Association of College Honor Societies, the nation’s only certifying agency for college and university honor societies.
Marianne Hause VMI Communications & Marketing
Editor's Note: Story originally published by Virginia Military Institute.