6 Honor Societies to Join for High School Success

Thursday, February 11, 2021
Honor Societies You Might Not Have Heard Of

As a high school student, you may have heard of some honor societies that you can join and the potential benefits for your education and future. 

It’s true: Joining a high school honor society has many benefits, including networking opportunities, meeting new people and friends, access to scholarships and internships, college application support, educational information, career development, and more. 

But did you know that there are actually several different types of honor societies you can join based on your interests and goals? 

Below are 7 stellar high school honor societies that you might not have heard of; but after you’ve read this article, you might find that you want to join one of them!

1. National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS)

NSHSS, the National Society of High School Scholars, requires members to reach a certain GPA and showcase a level of academic achievement and commitment to community. 

NSHSS prides itself on recognizing top-notch scholars, giving them a community in which to thrive, helping them prepare for college and beyond, and gain opportunities through scholarships, leadership opportunities, and networking events.

NSHSS does not have chapters but rather brings together scholars from all over the world to support and learn from each other, creating a worldwide community of high-achieving high school students. The society also supports educators through its educator grants program.

Students pay a $90 fee to join NSHSS, but memberships last a lifetime, and students can remain involved in the society post-high school and even post-grad school if they so choose.

2. National Association of African American Honors Program (NAAAHP)

NAAAHP began in 1990 when a group of Honors directors from about 20 Historically and Predominantly Black Colleges and Universities met at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia to create an honors society that would address specific needs of honors education for African-American students. 

This particular honor society has many different goals to help its students succeed, including promoting a challenging and engaging curriculum and supporting honors programs HBCUs and PBCUs, encouraging community service and involvement, facilitating African-American student enrollment in graduate and professional schools, and fostering an environment of scholarship, knowledge, and African-American cultural appreciation.

Students who become members enjoy a variety of benefits and the NAAAHP Annual Conference, which features student presentations and events like an academic quiz bowl, an “Honors Got Talent” competition, a debate competition, a Model UN, and more.

Membership costs vary depending on the type of membership. For individual students, annual dues are $20, while faculty and staff pay $75 per year, and post-secondary institutions pay $200 per year.

3. National Spanish Honor Society (Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica/SHH)

Formally organized in 1953 as the Spanish National Honors Society, the SHH is an honor society for high school students who are enrolled in Spanish and/or Portuguese and is sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP). Its mission is to recognize high school achievement in Spanish and Portuguese and promote interest in Hispanic and Luso-Brazilian studies.

Teachers who are members of the AATSP can start a chapter at their high school and bring in student members after paying an initial $35 charter fee. Once that’s done, each chapter must pay $5 per student initiated into the society. 

Each year, the SHH contributes more than $160,000 in the form of student member awards, including college scholarships for 60 high school senior SHH members and Student Travel Awards for 24 high school junior SHH members.

The SHH also publishes the student journal Albricias, so student members can submit essays, poetry, short articles, photography, and artwork for publication. Award-winning student contributions to the journal receive cash prizes for their work!

Finally, the SHH website includes a “Swap Shop,” which encourages SHH members to share ideas and network, creating a community of scholars studying Spanish and Portuguese.

4. Mu Alpha Theta

Mu Alpha Theta, the National High School and Two-Year College Mathematics Honor Society, is another high school honor society that thrives from the creation of different chapters in high schools and two-year colleges around the country.

The goal of this society is to inspire a keen interest in, develop strong scholarship in, and promote the enjoyment of mathematics in high school and two-year college students.

The society provides a way for schools to recognize and encourage students who enjoy and excel in mathematics, organizes a national convention for students and teachers to participate in math-related events and interact with other math enthusiasts from across the country, rewards outstanding extracurricular achievement by offering special awards, scholarships, and grants to students and faculty advisors, and provides mathematics competitions to participating members at their schools.

5. Quill and Scroll

Quill and Scroll is a high school honor society that encourages, supports, and recognizes individual student initiative and achievement in scholastic journalism, regardless of the medium. Its eight guiding principles are truth, learning, leadership, loyalty, initiative, integrity, judgment, and friendship.

Since its founding in 1926, school charters have been granted to more than 11,300 high schools in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and 29 foreign countries. To be eligible for a charter, schools must produce a magazine, newspaper, yearbook, literary magazine, broadcast program, or website. 

Members have access to specific Quill and Scroll scholarships, contests, and can submit their work to the Q&S Magazine or online to The Digital Scroll.

6. Tri-M Music Honor Society

The Tri-M Music Honor Society is the only national honor society for student musicians in the United States and welcomes student musicians in grades 6 through 12. As of now, there are over 2,100 chapters in all 50 states, involving more than 84,000 students. 

Students who become members have the opportunity to not only perform music but also contribute positively through community service, thus developing confidence, creativity, critical thinking, compassion, and many other leadership skills to serve them in college and beyond.

Interested students can start a chapter at their high school. Once they send a membership form and fee, they’ll receive all the resources they need from Tri-M to start their chapter and get going.


As you can see, there are so many different ways you can get involved in a high school honor society. More than that, you can find one that really suits you and your interests! 

So, consider joining a chapter at your high school, starting your own, or finding an honor society that will allow you to join as an individual student member.