We are well into the spring semester. Our first-year students navigated their first semester well and returned with renewed confidence. Our sophomores have filled the second-year seminars, which are now part of the Honors curriculum. Our juniors are narrowing topics for their Senior Honors Thesis and identifying potential advisers in Pre-Thesis. Our seniors are wrapping up their Honors Theses and looking forward to graduation and moving on to new adventures. It’s great to have everyone back.
This is also the time for recruiting the next Honors class. When speaking with prospective students, I am often asked “Why should I participate in the Honors Program?” It’s an honest question that’s pretty one-sided; the student wants to know how she or he would benefit. My standard answer is that the Honors Program offers an enriched curriculum of small, discussion-based seminars and courses and the opportunity to create a Senior Honors Thesis on a project or topic of the student’s choosing. The curriculum is designed to foster development in professionalism, interdisciplinary learning, creativity & problem solving, and critical thinking. Simply put, the Honors Program mission is to help our students become better people. However, we also expect students to be actively engaged and give back. When reviewing applications we evaluate students not only for their academic abilities, but also for what each student would contribute to the program as we create a community of scholars that represents diversity of thought, culture, background, and experiences. More and more CSU applicants are recognizing the value of the Honors Program; our applications are up by more than 30% over last year. It looks like we will have a record number of students in the fall 2017 entering class!