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  Xi Lambda induction held on Avila’s campus    
  Kansas City, MO    
April 23, 2009

Avila University inducted 15 new members into the Xi Lambda chapter of Phi Alpha, the national honor society for social work students.

Avila began the Xi Lambda chapter of Phi Alpha in 2007, making this Avila’s third group of inductees. To be inducted, students must be a senior or junior with a minimum GPA of 3.25 in all of their social work courses. If the student meets the criteria, they are invited to join the organization and receive a lifetime membership.

“Academic achievement is the primary differentiating criteria for these stand-out students,” said Lindee Petersen Wilson, MSW, LSCSW, chair and assistant professor for Avila’s social work department. “These students have worked hard to achieve a GPA in their social work coursework above 3.25.”

Students joining Xi Lambda receive networking benefits, along with prestige among peers and a resume building affiliation. The organization is also a way for social work alumni to work together on service projects and scholarship development.

“It has been a very rewarding feeling to see the pride students show as they are inducted,” Petersen Wilson said. “These students are our leaders and scholars, and we are proud of their achievements and happily offer them this honor.”

Along with the 13 student inductees, each chapter elects two honorary members annually. This year, Elaine Wright, Ph.D., and Doug Sikkel, MSW., were inducted. Wright is a social work faculty member at Avila and Sikkel is an adjunct instructor for the social work department.

Students inducted include; Jennie Aebly, Ruth Baker BeDunnah, Jennifer Cardinal, S. Gaudiosa Fidelis, Anna Frazier, Rachel Martin, Lisa Rush, Catherine Smith, Jill Street, Elaine Taylor, Dundeago Warrne, Keith Williston and Beth Zerr.


Avila University is a private, co-educational, values-based liberal arts institution founded by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, offering undergraduate, graduate, and adult degree programs. Avila University is located at 119th and Wornall Rd in southwest suburban Kansas City, Mo.