Honor societies and scholarship opportunities may have fees attached
Student questions HonorSociety.org invite
5:17 PM, Aug 26, 2013
9:56 PM, Aug 26, 2013
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Lauren Hammond is carrying a heavy financial load. Student loans help, but she's always looking for scholarships to save even more.
An email congratulating her on academic success at Palm Beach State College caught her attention.
"I thought since it had my school's name on it it might be legitimate," Hammond explained.
The email urged Hammond to activate her membership by the deadline to access freebies.
"Exclusive scholarship listings. Free foreign language classes," Hammond explained.
To activate her membership, Hammond had to pay $50.
"I thought it was legitimate because it was dot org," Hammond said.
We found the
Association of College Honor Societies issued an alert about the site because it's not transparent to the public. The site said the bylaws, national headquarters and staff are not listed online.
Several colleges have also issued warnings.
We tried to get answers about HonorSociety.org and the services provided. Our multiple phone calls and emails were not returned.
We asked Joseph Bryan, Director of Financial Aid at Palm Beach Atlantic University, to look at the website.
"They do offer a service. They do have some basic scholarship opportunities they are referencing, but this is information a student or family could potentially have access to without using their particular website," Bryan explained.
Bryan suggests students use free, local resources first.