Mortar Board National Honor Society Presents Gold Torch to UM Chapter

September 16, 2016

Mortar Board UM chapter Vice President Matthew Thomas (right) receives the Gold Torch from section coordinator Kelsey Willis (center) of Fort Collins, Colorado. (Also pictured is Colorado State University chapter President Liz Hicks).

MISSOULA – The Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society chose the Penetralia chapter at the University of Montana as one of the 36 winners for its Gold Torch award.

UM chapter Vice President Matthew Thomas accepted the award at the Mortar Board’s national conference in Indianapolis this summer.

The Gold Torch is a national distinction conferred annually upon the most outstanding chapters of Mortar Board. Recipients of the Gold Torch excel in all areas of chapter operations, while promoting scholarship, leadership and meaningful service to their institutions.

“We are extremely proud of our Gold Torch chapters,” said Abigail Diehl, Mortar Board’s national president. “Their members set the bar for excellence as scholar-leaders on their campuses, and their innovative programming positively impacts their communities throughout the year.”

UM’s Penetralia chapter also was among 28 Mortar Board chapters to receive the 2016 Project Excellence Award, which recognizes an outstanding project in scholarship, leadership development, fundraising, alumni involvement, service, “Reading is Leading” or Mortar Board Week. The Penetralia chapter received this award for organizing the 2016 Last Lecture event at UM.

Mortar Board is the premier national honor society recognizing college seniors for their outstanding achievements in scholarship, leadership and service. Since its founding in 1918, more than a quarter of a million members have joined 231 chartered chapters across the country. Members include numerous industry leaders, university presidents, best-selling authors, professional athletes, award-winning actors and top government officials.

For more information on Mortar Board, call 513-907-7485, email or visit

For more information on UM’s Penetralia chapter, visit


Contact: Chelsey Porter, UM Mortar Board chapter co-adviser, 406-243-2831,