2016-2017 was an experimental year for new coursework and programming.
Dean’s List: Top Five Curricular Adventures
- Honors College Forums: Last spring’s Flagship U! featured Chancellor Joe Steinmetz, who invited 14 future leaders to join him at his dining room table each Monday evening. At the table, the group discussed issues confronting public universities. In Arkansas Business this fall, Walton College Dean Matt Waller is connecting teams of honors students with Fortune 500 CEOs and Governor Asa Hutchinson.
- Honors College Signature Seminars: This seminar series unites top faculty with research-ambitious undergraduates. Students get to read the book with the faculty who are writing it, in all fields of study. Distinguished Professor of Anthropology Peter Ungar led 15 students through the fossil record of Teeth; Law Professor Brian Gallini and six undergraduates delved into some of the most disturbing criminal trials of the 21st century in Prosecution. This year, students can select from a wide array of intellectually stimulating seminars, including Race, Cancer, Soccer, Internet and Manuscript.
- Honors College Pulse: The Honors College took the “pulse” of the entire campus community on topics ranging from the aftermath of the presidential election to the pipeline crisis in North Dakota. Future Pulse discussions will focus on Syria, immigration, and transgendered communities. The lovely honors student lounge in Gearhart Hall serves as the venue for these sessions.
- Honors College Retro Readings: This fall English Professor Josh Smith, a scholar of medieval Welsh and Anglo-Norman literature, is leading 12 honors scholars through Tolkien, from Lord of the Rings to his scholarly writings on medieval literature. Next spring, Parks Family Professor of Science Education Bill McComas and students will dig into Darwin’s HMS Beagle and On the Origin of Species. Our “Retro Readings” series provides students from all colleges a “Great Books” experience, the hallmark of a liberal arts education.
- Honors Passport: During the January intersession, 16 students traveled to Peru not only to interact with the cultures and monuments they had studied in the Honors Humanities Project (H2P), but also to teach these sites in person, lecturing on the life of an African servant in a Dominican convent, discussing the Andean Hybrid Baroque in a church built with indigenous construction techniques, and detailing the discovery and interpretation of Machu Picchu on a precipice overlooking that spectacular site. The next Honors Passport in May 2018 will follow the medieval pilgrimage trail from Paris to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, exploring all things Romanesque.
Please share your ideas for future Honors College adventures! And come and see us in Gearhart Hall whenever you are on campus – my door in Gearhart Hall is always open.