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The Eastern Kentucky University Epsilon Chapter of the Alpha Phi Sigma (APS) Criminal Justice Honor Society captured a record nine awards at its annual conference in Denver, Colorado, surpassing the previous record of seven in 2015. 

“This is an incredible accomplishment, given the record number of chapters competing at the conference,” said Dr. James Wells, School of Justice Studies professor and APS faculty sponsor.

Chapter awards include:

·         First-place national award for “Outstanding Chapter Goal Award for Service.”

·         First-place national award for “Star Chapter Award.”

·         Third-place national award for “Community Service Theme Project – Rehabilitation in Criminal Justice.”

·         Third-place national award for “Best Crime Scene Investigation Award.”

·         Third-place national award for best T-Shirt Design (in honor of slain Richmond Police Officer and EKU graduate Daniel Ellis).

In addition, several individuals were honored:

·         Chapter Vice President and criminal justice graduate student Joseph Ellis won the “National Member Award” and a $500 scholarship.

·         Social media chair Anna Reeves won the $1,500 V.A. Leonard Scholarship. This is the first time an EKU chapter member has won this top scholarship award from Alpha Phi Sigma. Leonard founded Alpha Phi Sigma in 1942.

·         EKU School of Justice Studies lecturer and criminal justice alumnus Carl Root won the national “Alumni Achievement Award.”

·         Undergraduate criminal justice student Caleb Houchens was the recipient of a $100 scholarship.

“Our students also gave a good effort in the Leadership and Unity Chapter Goal Awards, criminal justice knowledge tests, best paper and yearbook competitions,” said Wells.  “There was a total of $2,825 in monetary prizes associated with the above-mentioned awards. This is over twice the amount in monetary awards our chapter has ever received.”

The EKU Epsilon Chapter of the Alpha Phi Sigma raised over $5,000 this past year to send 12 members to Denver. “As you can see,” said Wells, “EKU’s Epsilon Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma is a very worthy student association that pays back to EKU, the College of Justice & Safety and the School of Justice Studies.

“The chapter should be congratulated for its noteworthy accomplishments,” Wells continued.  “Much of the credit for this year’s success is due to the leadership of student President Krista Smithers and her executive officers Joe Ellis, Amanda Riddle, Alexandra Carpenter and Austin Brewer.”

Smithers said the chapter is “looking forward to winning more awards at next year's competition at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences conference in Kansas City. We hope Eastern Kentucky University, the College of Justice & Safety and the School of Justice Studies can continue to support our chapter’s efforts. We very much appreciate the support we received this past year.”

EKU’s College of Justice & Safety has been designated as a Program of Distinction by Kentucky’s Council for Postsecondary Education since 1998.