The Honors Program is the first of two programs proposed by President Griffith. Dr. Meigan M. Fields, an associate professor of political science, will serve as the director for the program. The new unit officially kicks off this semester.
“It is a program that will reach across the university and across disciplines,” said Fields. “We want students from all majors to be a part of the honors program. All of our professors are committed to making sure that our students receive a top-notch education. We’re putting in place, challenging programs and different opportunities that might take [students] to different places.”
Fields spearheaded two important retention programs on campus. The new director served as co-principal investigator for the African-American Male Initiative and as the director for the Women’s Learning Community on campus. In her new role, Fields promises the new honors program will challenge young people.
“We will identify classes that will be designated for honors students, and those classes will parallel the abilities that these students have already demonstrated and get them to a higher critical-thinking level. [The coursework] will certainly be filled with challenges to help them rise to the occasion.”
The Honors Program, which is under the direct purview of the Office of Academic Affairs, will reside in Carnegie Hall. Plans are underway to refurbish and repurpose the facility for the program. Fields stated that honors students will continue to be housed at Ohio Hall. Incoming students will be placed into groups to take the same courses together.
Fields is also organizing an advisory board. The program director is also traveling to New Orleans this November, for the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference. She will consult with administrators from various universities to learn how to establish a similar program on FVSU’s campus. The committee will also determine what classes are appropriate for the new initiative.
Fields says that she believes that the honors designation on an FVSU diploma will give program participants an advantage after graduation.
“I would like to think that when I look at a transcript, and its stamped ‘honors,’ then I would think that graduate schools (and even those who are going to go straight into the workforce) will be getting someone who is a cut above the rest, and seriously committed to academic achievement,” she said. In the future, Fields hopes the program will be able to offer scholarships to participants.
For more information about the program, please contact the Office of Academic Affairs, (478) 825-6330.