What Do Students Think of National Society of Leadership and Success?

CCSF student Emily Trinh works on her laptop in her Inner Sunset apartment in San Francisco, Nov. 29, 2020. (Photo by Jennifer Hsu/The Guardsman)

By Hannah Asuncion


The National Society of Leadership and Success, NSLS has nominated various students, especially international students, to join their honor society for the past couple of weeks. In order to be inducted, the nominee needs to pay $95 and then go through various steps leading up to their induction, but some students have been questioning the organization’s legitimacy.


Chapter President of NSLS Jimmy Tran confirmed that they are an established chapter operating with a free club version for all students to join. They are a registered student organization on campus that holds social events and workshops for the future.


“Our goal is to create a community that offers opportunities to build leadership skills through practice and peer support.”


Their nomination process involves the Upper Society where they recognize students who meet the GPA threshold with a certain credit window, which then offers them a chance to enroll in a leadership certification program. Their paid membership is not endorsed by City College.

CCSF student Burcu Ozdemir stands for a portrait outside her apartment building in downtown San Francisco, Nov. 29, 2020. (Photo by Jennifer Hsu/The Guardsman)

Members who decide to accept their nomination will get access to Inducted Member Benefits, which includes a leadership certification, and members who have a 3.3 GPA or above receive a Presidential Seal on their certificate.


There are partnered discounts when it comes to the membership, like at Earnest a student loan refinancing company. There are other gifts and discounts at over 1,000 other companies through websites or mobile apps.


For example, at Audible there is a two-month free trial, two free audiobooks, and four NSLS recommended audiobooks valued at $129. For Apple, there is up to $200 off any eligible Mac and $20 on an iPad Pro with Apple education pricing. For Dell, you can save up to 40% on select PCs and up to 50% on select TVs and electronics.


These benefits also offer an exclusive job bank, scholarship portal, and a personalized letter of recommendation. There is also a speaker broadcast series where public figures address their experience with leadership and success, teach from their experience, share advice, and also answer questions.

A mailed invitation to join the National Society of Leadership and Success sits on the dining table in Emily Trinh’s San Francisco apartment, Nov. 29, 2020. (Photo by Jennifer Hsu/The Guardsman)

The 2020 speakers include Neil Patrick Harris, Tanya Acker, Jack Black, Bill Nye, and Matthew McConaughey.


Emily Trinh, an international student, decided not to accept the nomination due to NSLS not being accredited. “The fee is too high (for me) in exchange for membership of something not that prestigious. There are forums and quora that goes more in-depth than I can.”


Trinh also looked into the President of the NSLS and to her his credentials are not that impressive. His position as President is an internship with the organization behind NSLS.


She is also under the impression that NSLS tries way too hard when it comes to showing what type of organization they are and they have also attempted multiple times to get Trinh to accept her nomination. “If they are as desirable as they claim they are, they don’t need to beg me to join.”


According to Trinh, the NSLS Chapter at City College is brand new and anyone can set up a Chapter at their school from what she has read online.

Burcu Ozdemir, another international student, also decided to not accept the nomination because she did some research of her own which led to various questions due to bad reviews of NSLS. She also didn’t want to be a leader in the future and she wasn’t looking for any type of scholarships as well.


“Firstly, I didn’t accept, they asked for a membership fee before everything. I prefer to see websites and some of their workshops then pay for it. I kinda feel this organization is more about taking students’ money,” Ozdemir said.


There has been so much superstition when it comes to the legitimacy of the National Society of Leadership and Success because it seems like there has been lots of inconsistency about what their organization offers or if it’s actually something that students should find trustworthy.


The Guardsman