PGM
International Honor Society in Social Sciences
The mission of Pi Gamma Mu is to encourage and promote excellence in the social sciences and to uphold the ideals of scholarship and service.

VIEW FROM THE PODIUM

ONE OF PI GAMMA MU’S BEST PRODUCTS

Pi Gamma Mu’s international constitution defines our mission this way:  “The mission of Pi Gamma Mu is to encourage and promote excellence in the social sciences and to uphold the ideals of scholarship and service.”  If Pi Gamma Mu is to “promote excellence,” presumably our honor society is obligated to live up to the standard of excellence as it generates membership services and products.

I believe that the members of our international Board of Trustees and of our professional staff accept the responsibility to cause Pi Gamma Mu’s output to reflect a commitment to excellence.  Consider, for example, our international journal, the International Social Science Review (ISSR).  Pi Gamma Mu first published a journal, then known as Social Science, in 1925, just one year after the society was founded.  For 87 years, the society has published a journal.  Since 1982, the journal has been known as the ISSR.  An edition of the ISSR appears each summer and another appears each winter.  The articles that appear in the ISSR have been peer-reviewed before appearing in print.  Each edition also contains about 15 book reviews, which are written by scholars and carefully polished for publication by the book-review editor and the editor-in-chief.

Dean J. Fafoutis, a historian at Salisbury University in Salisbury, Md., has been the editor since 2002.  He is a very skilled editor.  By the time he and the referees have evaluated a manuscript and prepared it for publication, it is manifestly a genuine contribution to the literature of the social sciences.

Pi Gamma Mu has two compelling reasons to publish an outstanding journal.

  • The flagship honor society of the social sciences ought to encourage outstanding scholarship, and showcase it as an example for others.
  • Our honor society can encourage the production of excellent scholarship by our members‑‑professors and students alike‑‑by providing an outlet for their research products.

Consider the research papers that students write in their social-science courses.  I suppose that 99 percent of them are read by nobody other than the students and their professors.  In many cases, the secrecy is probably merciful in that the student’s sole purpose in writing it was to get the professor off his back for a while, and the paper may have absolutely no further value.  But think about the papers that were written by serious students, who actually invested time, effort, and even creativity in them.  How many of those papers could interest others‑‑and possibly inspire others to explore the findings with additional research‑‑if they were brought to the attention of an interested audience of some kind?

In William Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet, Polonius comments:  “Though this be madness, yet there is method in it.”  There is method to Pi Gamma Mu’s madness, too.  We encourage our members to expose their research to public view by presenting papers at our conventions and by submitting them to the ISSR for peer review.  We hope that this activity might encourage our student members to write not just papers that will placate their professors but to write inspired papers that will enlighten others.  We hope that this activity might encourage our members‑‑professors and students alike‑‑to undertake research that will result in manuscripts that the peer-review process will find to be acceptable for publication.

Dear Reader:  If what I am describing sparks your interest, but you don’t completely understand the process to which I am referring, please don’t just give up on this train of thought or think that, somehow, it must not apply to you.  You can participate in this enterprise of contributing to the literature of the social sciences.  It could be that nobody has ever explained it to you.  You are entitled to an explanation!  Let’s keep this conversation going.  Please contact any of the following:

  • Any of your professors.  Ask them for encouragement.
  • Dean J. Fafoutis, editor of the ISSR.  His E‑mail address is [email protected] .
  • Me.  My E‑mail address is [email protected] .

All you have to tell any of us is that your aspiration is to help to fulfill Pi Gamma Mu’s mission of encouraging excellence and producing excellent work.  That will motivate us to advise you about what to do next.  All of us see our share of mediocrity on a day-to-day basis.  The opportunity to guide someone who wants to accomplish something extraordinary will always capture our attention.

Barry D. Friedman
International President

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CHANGE OF ADDRESS

Anytime you move, such as after graduation, please notify the Pi Gamma Mu office immediately.  We use your e-mail address to send out the Pi Gamma Mu Newsletter, so it is important that we have your current e-mail address. If the address we have for you is through your university it may not be available for you after graduation and you will not receive the newsletters.  Your mailing (postal) address is used to mail our journal, the International Social Science Review, so this information is also critical.  We want to remain in contact with you over the years.

We would appreciate it if you would send us your new mailing address and e-mail address.  You can e-mail us at executivedirector@pigammamu.org, or through the Web site at www.pigammamu.org/contact.html.  You can also mail a change-of-address card , post card, or letter with your name and old and new address to: Pi Gamma Mu, 1001 Millington, Suite B, Winfield, KS 67156.

OTHER ARTICLES:

Front Page

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MEET YOUR REPRESENTATIVE

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VIEW FROM THE PODIUM

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REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE

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CHAPTERS NEWS

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SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITES

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BOOK-REVIEW EDITOR POSITION OPENING

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CONFERENCE OPPORTUNITIES

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CONGRATULATIONS ARE IN ORDER

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FIRST IDEAL

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STUDENT SHADOW PRESIDENT UPDATE

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WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

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SCHOLARSHIP AWARD

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OPPORTUNITY FOR GIVING

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IDEALS OF PI GAMMA MU

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