National Italian Honor Society

The Società Onoraria Italica

The Società Onoraria Italica, National Italian Honor Society for High School students is sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of Italian (AATI). Its purpose is to give recognition to high school students for their achievements in Italian studies as well as to promote a greater understanding and appreciation of Italian culture and civilization.

The Società was founded in 1965 by a group of New York teachers of Italian and sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of Italian. Prof. Carlo Sclafani, of Westchester Community College and SUNY Distinguished Professor, was the President of the Società from 1975 to 2012. Prof. Lucrezia Lindia, of SUNY-WCC and a retiree of Eastchester High School, has been President of the Società since 2012.

Please note that in order for students to participate in the Società Onoraria Italica:

  • The advisor/teacher must be a paid member of AATI for the current year. Membership forms can be found on the AATI website. The form must be completed by the advisor/teacher.
  • Advisor/Teacher must complete the initial Società Onoraria Italica Application Form only once. The cost is $10.
  • Advisor/Teacher must complete the Società Onoraria Italica Order Form at least 5 weeks before the Induction Ceremony.
  • Advisors/Teachers are responsible for obtaining a purchase order number if it is required by the school district.
  • Make personal check/school check payable to Società Onoraria Italica-AATI.
  • The amount of the payment will be confirmed by email. Make a copy for your own records.
  • Submit order form, separate list of students’ names, and payment or purchase order to:

Lucrezia G. Lindia, President
Società Onoraria Italica
32 Meeting House Rd
Greenwich, CT 06831

For further information, visit our FAQ page, or please write to President Lucrezia Lindia:

Order Supplies
View Constitution
Start a Chapter

Please note that for your students to be part of the National Italian Honor Society, the advisor/teacher must be a member of the National AATI. The form must be completed by the advisor/teacher.

Please log in to your AATI member account in order to access the form.

Order Supplies*

* Certificates, Pins, and Medals

Constitution of the National Italian Honor Society

Article I: Name and Purposes

Section 1.
The name of this organization shall be the Società Onoraria Italica for Secondary Schools (public, private, and parochial).

Section 2.
The purpose of this organization is to stimulate interest in the study of the Italian language, to give recognition for distinguished achievement in Italian, and to promote an understanding and appreciation of the Italian culture and civilization.

Section 3.
This organization is sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of Italian (AATI).

Article II: Membership

Section 1.
Membership shall be restricted to students enrolled in classes of Italian beyond the second year.

Section 2.
Candidates must have achieved an average of 90% or above in Italian for the three semesters of high school prior to invitation. Also, they must have maintained a general scholarship average of 80% or above.

Section 3.
The number of candidates shall not exceed 30% of the students enrolled in Italian at the time of selection.

Section 4.
Students may continue their active membership for one year after the termination of their study of Italian.

Section 5.
Italian instructors of each school chapter must be members of the American Association of Teachers of Italian (AATI).

Section 6.
A chapter which does not submit a list of initiates during a period of two years may be considered inactive. To regain active status, the chapter must resubmit an application accompanied by the fee which shall be the same as the original charter fee.

Article III: Administration

Section 1.
The national officers of the organization shall be a president, a vice-president, and a secretary-treasurer.

Section 2.
The president of the Società Onoraria Italica shall act as liaison officer with the American Association of Teachers of Italian, shall promote the establishment of new chapters, and shall be responsible for the welfare of the organization. The position of the president is not subject to term limits.

Section 3.
The secretary-treasurer of the Società Onoraria Italica shall keep accurate records of chapters and members, collect the charter and membership fees, and manage all the expenses. The secretary-treasurer shall render annual accounting of the financial status of the organization.

Article IV: Recognition

Benefits of the Società Onoraria Italica are as follows:

  1. Students receive a certificate of membership, a pin, and/or a medal..
  2. Newly elected members are published in the AATI Newsletter and in the local newspaper.
  3. Instructors may place a photograph of members in the yearbook.
  4. Counselors include membership on student’s transcript.
  5. Schools honor the new members at an induction ceremony.
  6. Italian instructor presents an award to the Outstanding Student of Italian at graduation.

Article V: Amendments

  1. If a member of the Società Onoraria Italica does not maintain an average of 90% or above, the Italian instructor may terminate the student's membership.
  2. Suggestions for amendments may be submitted by all chapters to the president of the Società Onoraria Italica.

How to start a chapter of the Società Onoraria Italica in your school

  1. Obtain permission from your Principal. (Note that for the schools of New York City Board of Education, permission has been obtained from the Bureau of Students Activities and from the Bureau of Foreign Languages.)
  2. Select a name for the chapter, preferably honoring an Italian person, such as “The Nicolò Machiavelli Chapter” of the Società Onoraria Italica at Eastchester High School.
  3. Apply for a chapter certification by sending the initial fee of $10.00.
  4. Determine the possible candidates for membership (students whose average grade in Italian is 90% or over).
  5. Ascertain that the possible candidates have an overall scholarship record of 85% or above.
  6. Collect each new student membership fee: $2.00 for the initiation fee and for the membership certificate.
  7. Order membership pins and medals. The cost of each pin is $5.00 and of each medal is $8.00.

II. Electing New Members

  1. Candidates must be enrolled in the third semester of Italian courses or above at the time of election.
  2. Candidates must have an average of 90% or above in the study of Italian.
  3. Candidates must have an overall scholarship average of at least 84% at the time of election.
  4. Number of students elected in any single year shall NOT exceed 30% of all students studying Italian in your school.
  5. Names of newly elected members must be forwarded to the president of the Società Onoraria Italica.
  6. Collect each new student membership fee: $2.00 for the initiation fee and for the membership certificate. (Student membership fee is required in order to be inducted into the Società Onoraria Italica).

III. Activities

The constitution of the Società Onoraria Italica does not impose specific activities. Therefore, each chapter can establish its local activities for its members.

Some suggestions are:

  1. Cultural:
    1. Arrange meetings with guest speakers on cultural topics.
    2. Organize special readings and memory recitals.
    3. Plan excursions to museums, special libraries, theaters, monuments, etc.
    4. Coordinate discussion sessions on cultural topics.
    5. View films on Italy and Italian civilization.
  2. Social:
    1. Plan and conduct regular meetings.
    2. Conduct an induction ceremony.
    3. Organize school gatherings/outings or inter-chapter gatherings with members of near-by schools.
    4. Have students correspond with pen pals in Italy.
  3. Service:
    1. Invite members of the Società Onoraria Italica to coach and/or tutor students in Italian.
    2. Encourage members to act as “buddies” to students newly arrived from Italy.
    3. Request that members write articles for departmental publication.
    4. Encourage members to maintain a bulletin board in Italian.

Prof. Lucrezia Lindia
32 Meeting House Road
Greenwich, CT 06831
Revised March 2024


PRESIDENTE: Signore e signori componenti della Società Onoraria Italica, siamo qui riuniti per accogliere fra noi con gioia gli studenti che hanno dimostrato un vivo interesse e attaccamento alla bella lingua italiana.

Questa Società Onoraria Italica è stata fondata dall’Associazione Americana degli Insegnanti d’Italiano per gli studenti che frequentano le scuole secondarie negli Stati Uniti e questa sezione è nata grazie agli sforzi dell’INSEGNANTE (name of teacher) e della SCUOLA (name of school), che l’hanno fondata nell’anno ____. Il nome scelto per la sezione è (name of chapter) e il motto è “Sempre Avanti”.

Diamo ora inizio alla cerimonia di insediamento, seria e significativa. Questa, davanti a voi, è la candela madre che presenteremo ogni anno. Rappresenta la nostra ispirazione.

Ognuno di voi ha in mano una candela, l’immagine del nostro percorso di vita. Così com’è, ancora spenta, esiste, ma non ha vita. Quella candela ci dice “Se mi accendete, ho vita; se no, muoio”. Che la nostra vita non sia mai una candela che non arde! Ora verrete, uno per volta, a ricevere dalla candela madre la fiamma che col suo calore simboleggia l’ispirazione verso la meta ideale. Venite avanti quando sentite chiamare il vostro nome.

INSEGNANTE o PRESIDENTE: Ho l’onore di presentare i seguenti candidati che aspirano a diventare componenti della Società Onoraria Italica.
(Names of New Members)

PRESIDENTE: Ripetete insieme il giuramento della Società frase per frase. “Come componente della sezione di (Name of Chapter, and Name of School) prometto di dedicarmi allo studio della lingua italiana ricordando che una lingua può costituire un forte legame fra persone di varie origini etniche e religiose. Da cittadino della mia patria m’impegno a promuovere l’amicizia e l’armonia fra essa e le altre nazioni del mondo. Questo è il mio giuramento”.

Ora ognuno di voi spegnerà la fiamma della candela, ma mai quella dello spirito. Ricordiamocelo. Ogni nuovo socio conservi la sua candela a memoria del suo insediamento nella nostra società.

Amici, per l’autorità a me conferita dalla carica di presidente della Società Onoraria Italica, vi dichiaro soci di questa sezione, (name of chapter). Venite a ricevere il vostro certificato.