The Florida College Honors Program launches next semester with the mission of providing opportunities for high-achieving students to grow in their liberal arts education through academics and service.
The director of the program, Dr. Brian Crispell, notes the program will foster student success in areas inside and outside of the classroom. His goal for the program is to help students develop academically, while learning from one another in order to serve more efficiently in the Kingdom:
“We believe it is never enough to simply ‘know.’ Rather, our goal is to become better stewards of what we ‘know’ and to better harness that knowledge to serve Him and benefit mankind.”
Students will sharpen their analytical thought and writing, deepen their knowledge, and develop oral presentation skills through the Honors Program. Through scholarship and internship opportunities, students will gain a greater ability to serve broader society. In addition, Honors students will have priority consideration to join a four week study abroad program in London that is projected for May 2023.
Ten students from various disciplines and academic years make up the program’s initial cohort:
- Claire Arden, a junior in Communication and team captain of the Oratory Union. Claire was drawn to this program since she “enjoys a challenge,” and “likes hard questions.”
- Caroline Branham, a freshman majoring in Nursing. She understands the intersection of service and her studies.
- Emily Cook, a junior in Nursing. She has been active in Cross Country and is interested in “life-long learning” and fitting that with an active life of faith.
- Hannah Cooper, a sophomore in Liberal Studies/Pre-Health Science, aiming for PA school. She is highly organized, active in social and spiritual areas, and interested in the challenge of an interdisciplinary program.
- Noah Eichhorn, a first year Liberal Studies major considering law or medical school. He sees the service applications to both and desires to make a difference for others in whatever area he chooses.
- Seth Kemple, a junior in Business. Seth is interested in a future career with Chick-Fil-A and is familiar with spiritual applications in various settings such as the school’s Sowers program.
- Paige Kercheville, a junior in Business/Marketing. Her focus is to help Children’s Miracle Network or a similar non-profit as part of a fundraising/marketing team.
- Macy Palmer, a junior in Education, is active in Cross Country and Track. Macy is focused on making an impact in teaching and is excited to be challenged further through a seminar setting.
- Chloe Sneed, a junior in Education, is engaged in various social and spiritual areas of the College. Chloe is looking for a greater chance to serve through accountability, conversation, and learning.
- Yaritza Vasquez, a sophomore majoring in Kinesiology aiming for PT school at USF. She is on the ladies’ varsity soccer team and is active in serving in the local hospital.
Honors students will be guided in “Honors Hours” within academic disciplines central to their major fields of study. These will focus on deeper considerations of their studies and be directed by professors in those fields. In addition, “Honors Evenings” will take place occasionally throughout the semester to provide a seminar setting for students to present their research from the “Honors Hour” to their classmates in the Honors Program. The evening will promote discussion between the students’ various academic and spiritual perspectives, and is open to the greater student body.
Upper division Honors students will also be involved in service activities, both on and off campus. This service will focus on an element within the student’s academic interest.
Students may apply as early as the first semester of their freshman year and as late as their junior year. The ideal candidate should be academically able, love learning, and up for a challenge. Any interested students must complete an application package that includes:
- A cumulative 3.5 GPA on at least 14 academic, FC hours (either completed or in progress)
- A cover letter explaining their academic interests, extracurricular activities, and specific goals
- A 1- to 2-page essay explaining the student’s perspective on education relating to a life of service and faith
- Two letters of recommendation from Florida College Professors