Ceremony to Mark Opening of New Honors House

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo.,

Oct. 5, 2009 – The Southeast Missouri State University Honors Program will celebrate its new Honors House with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10, at its new location at 603 N. Henderson. 

The event, which coincides with Homecoming weekend, is open to the public.  An open house will immediately follow the ceremony until 12:30 p.m.

Southeast President Kenneth W. Dobbins, Provost Jane Stephens, Dean of the School of University Studies David Starrett, Director of the Honors Program Craig Roberts and Student Honors Council Co-Chairs Amy Nickless and Scott Pauley will participate in the ribbon-cutting ceremony. 

The Honors Program is now located at 902 College Hill.  The new location will provide classroom space, a lounge, a computer commons area, a small conference room for seminars and a quiet study area for tutoring and study groups.  The house at 603 N. Henderson formerly was occupied by University Relations, which recently relocated to the Wehking Alumni Center. 

Roberts says he is very excited about the upgrade.

“The new Honors House will give the program significantly greater opportunities for its classes.  The students will have a better atmosphere to study together, and we hope that it will be another opportunity to increase the retention for the students to complete the program,” Roberts said.  “It will build a sense of an Honors community.”

Honors students are also more than ready for the change.  They say they look forward to the abundance of space in the new Honors House and hope that it encourages more Honors students to utilize the facilities. “More students will want to come to the house.  My hope is that once they see what we offer, both in the house and academically, they will want to become active participants of the program, and the number of Honors Scholars will grow,” Nickless said. Pauley said, “The possibilities have vastly expanded over those of the old house, and we are excited to have this opportunity.”    Students with a high school grade point average of a 3.4 on a 4.0 scale (or its equivalent) and who have received an ACT composite score of at least 25 are encouraged to join the Honors Program.  Once involved in the Honors program, students must retain a minimum of a 3.25 grade point average and be actively involved in the Honors Program.   “The Honors Program is more than just academics; it is a place where students can make friends and connections that last a lifetime,” Nickless said. 

The Honors Program offers exceptional students the opportunity to enroll in Honors courses which are geared toward deeper, more thorough understanding of concepts and issues.  The courses allow for more interaction and discussion between classmates and professors.   “The courses offered in the Honors curriculum open students to a new and unique way of thinking which, when properly applied, can benefit any student in any career field,” Pauley said. 

Seniors in the Honors program are required to complete an Honors project in which they work closely with an Honors faculty member before presenting their completed project before a board.  The program also has activities in which its members can socialize or participate in study groups together.

“We try to host one big activity each month for our students, such as a movie night or trivia night,” Roberts said.  

Upon completion of the Honors Program, students receive Honors Scholars recognition, are identified at commencement and the Honors Convocation, receive a certificate noting their completion and a medallion to wear at commencement, and a note on their transcript signifying completion of the Honors Program.   “We would certainly like to thank Dr. Dobbins, Dr. Stephens, and Dr. Starrett for their support.  They were essential in providing us with the great space and exciting opportunity,” Roberts said.