College off to a fast start
from left: Jessica Shirmer,
Genieve Lebeau, Andrea Winter and Dr. Carolyn Thompson. Back row
from left: Robin Connaly, Jeremy Engelskirshen, Mareen Baisley,
Barbara Jacobson and
With 69 scholars
already enrolled and 22 new recruits expected this fall, UNC Pembroke's
University Honors College (UHC) is making
its mark on campus.
The newest class
of recruits - the Class of 2007 - will be the third for the new Honors
College, which is producing some of the university's top scholars and
Several Honors College
members distinguished themselves recently. Blake Tyner published a book
on local history. And, Barbara Jacobson was the recipient of the university's
top leadership and community service award last year.
"Many of our
students have distinguished themselves inside and outside of the university
community," Dr. Thompson said. "This is what being an honors
college is all about. We want to create a community of scholars that
will enhance the scholarship of the entire university."
about forming a cohort that works together to challenge each other and
the university as a whole," she said. "It's working."
UNCP has set aggressive
goals for the Honors College for the next five years, Dr. Thompson said.
"We will have
about 200 outstanding scholars in the college by the year 2008,"
she said. "Freshmen enrolling in the Honors College in 2008 will
have average SAT scores near 1,200 and graduate having taken many honors
courses for their general education requirements."
During the 2002-2003
academic year, the Honors College curriculum consisted of eight courses.
Five more honors courses will come on line in 2003-2004.
The average GPA
of the current UHC scholars is 3.6, and 60 percent of the 22 incoming
freshmen have SAT scores above 1150. In the program's first three years,
only 10 percent of the students admitted to the Honors College have
failed to maintain the 3.0 GPA required to remain in the College.
The UHC is taking
an active role in the state, regional and national Collegiate Honors
Councils (CHC). Last year, UNCP hosted the annual state meeting, and
five UHC members traveled to Salt Lake City to participate in the national
CHC meeting. Students will travel this fall to Chicago for the national
meeting, where they will meet with honors students from across the country.
Dr. Thompson believes
that the foundation for meeting the UHC's lofty goals is firmly in place,
but there are some major challenges.
Fundraising is a
major issue because state aid for honors programs is limited. Higher
participation by minorities and athletes is also a top priority.
"I would like
to thank Jefferson Pilot and (local agent) Gene Hall for their generous
support," Dr. Thompson said. "More support is needed for a
variety of enrichment programs."
Dr. Thompson said it's been fun.
she said. "I really do enjoy these kids. They are a diverse group."
For more information
about the University Honors College,
to University Newswire