4630 N. Rome Avenue, Tampa, Florida 33603 | p. 813-870-0860 | f. 813-877-9136

Member Pledge

I promise to search for truth to utilize knowledge and to seek wisdom through the pursuit of academic excellence in the Social Studies I promise service to Tampa Catholic High School for true scholars of the Social Studies lead by example.


 

Background

Tampa Catholic High School formed a chapter of Rho Kappa in the 2004-2005 school year. Rho Kappa seeks to recognize achievement and excellence in the discipline of social studies at the high school level. The name, RHO KAPPA, is taken from two words of semitic origin. RHO is derived from "resh" meaning "head" and KAPPA is derived from "kapf" which means "palm of the hand." Both these terms symbolize our firm belief that knowledge, without service - a helping hand extended in friendship to others -, is useless.

This society is open to juniors and seniors who have completed at least 1 academic social studies course in each prior year with a minimum 3.5 un-weighted GPA in those classes. Students must maintain the GPA in future social studies courses in order to continue in membership. Students must also exhibit qualities of leadership, service and citizenship in either their school or in a community group / organization.

The Tampa Catholic chapter is named in honor of Mr. Jack Carney, a long time Social Studies faculty member at TC.


Excerpt from the Induction Ceremony

Our name, RHO KAPPA, is taken from two words of semitic origin. RHO is derived from “resh” meaning “head” and KAPPA is derived from “kapf” which means “palm of the hand.” Both these terms symbolize our firm belief that knowledge, without service (a helping hand extended in friendship to others), is useless.

The principle purpose of RHO KAPPA is to stimulate a deeper and more comprehensive understanding of all the academic disciplines comprising the social studies curriculum. Thus, on this occasion it is appropriate to take a moment and reflect on the significance and contributions of the social studies in the development of the individual.

The white candle represents veritas, or truth. According to Nadine Gordimer, a South African author, “The truth isn’t always beauty, but the hunger for it is.” In Social Studies we seek the truth. The truth we seek is untarnished by prejudice or bias. It is this search that leads to greater understanding of the world and humanity’s place in it.

The green candle stands for scientia, or knowledge. The great philosopher Euripides stated, “Who so neglects learning in his youth, loses the past and is dead for the future.” As a member of RHO KAPPA you have the distinction of being one who seeks knowledge in your youth and you are therefore building upon your understanding of the past in order to create a future of your own and that of the world in which we live.

The gold candle represents sapienta, or wisdom. As Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “It is the province of knowledge to speak, and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.” Wisdom is the tool we use to discern what is true and how to value that truth.

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