PTK President dedicated to chapter’s success and growth

Abigail Malchow

A day in the life of Liam Liedorff, president of Phi Theta Kappa’s Beta Iota Kappa chapter at San Diego City College, can be quite chaotic. In addition to his PTK duties, Liedorff attends school full time as a computer science major, teaches music, plays in a band and is a devoted husband and father.

“I have no free time,” Liedorff said. “Every minute I have I try to multitask.”

Liedorff has been working tirelessly as president of PTK since 2009 and is currently recruiting new members to join the chapter throughout the spring.

“I want to extend the concept of PTK to the campus,” he said. “We need creative people to show their leadership and take charge.”

Phi Theta Kappa is an international honor society for the two-year colleges, and membership requires maintaining a 3.5 GPA or higher.

Liedorff said he wants students to see the many benefits of joining PTK, which include scholarship opportunities, improving leadership and life skills, and giving back to the community. He said he believes membership will ultimately set people up for success in their academic and professional futures.

According to Chuck Cook, the executive secretary for PTK, the chapter has been using several methods to get qualifying students to join. The group participated in Club Rush, sent out postcards and even had the college president’s office send out invitations.

“The invitations from the president’s office have been especially helpful,” Cook said.

Even so, getting students to join is still difficult because of the criteria they have to meet, and most students are worried that it might take up too much of their time and negatively affect their GPA.

Ironically, those were the same reasons Liedorff had for not joining before he changed his mind after realizing there were so many scholarships available.

“Money for school was very attractive,” he said.
The chapter offers two scholarships that pay for the membership fees, which come out of their own funds.

So far this spring, they have had 20 students join and more than 40 participated in orientation Feb. 19. Liedorff said he anticipates even more students joining before the April 30 membership deadline and has scheduled the induction ceremony for May 8.

The chapter has many goals for the year, including participating in the Project Graduation food drive, and Better Worlds book drive.

“Our canyon cleanups have been successful and a lot of fun,” said Dana Long, the treasurer for PTK. “I would also like us to do more of those this year.”

The canyon cleanups are throughout San Diego County, and the group participates in them through the “I Love a Clean San Diego” program.

The chapter has come a long way since last spring, when Liedorff was left to manage PTK by himself after most of the officers graduated.

“Given all the circumstances, we wouldn’t have been nearly as successful without him,” Cook said. “He has kept PTK alive.”

Liedorff completely renovated the Web site for the group, and remains committed to keeping the information current so members know what activities are coming up that they can participate in.

He has also made the orientations and induction ceremonies more interactive and informative so students can get a more thorough understanding of PTK membership.

“Liam is a great president and I enjoy working with him,” Dana said. “Hopefully more people will take advantage of everything the chapter and PTK have to offer.”