In November Lincoln Memorial University announced that it was developing an honors scholars program that would begin in the Fall of 2012. Now, that program is just weeks away from getting underway with several returning students joining a group of incoming freshmen for the launch.
The academic program for gifted students includes honors courses, an honors thesis project with faculty mentor and learning through service. The scholars program is meant to be the first step to a full-blown honors college at LMU.
The program, which is aimed at providing deeper and broader learning opportunities, will launch in August. The program will have a limited enrollment and will require students to maintain semester and cumulative grade point averages of 3.0 or higher with no honors course grade lower than a “C.” Dr. Amiel Jarstfer, dean of the Paul V. Hamilton School of Arts and Science, is the architect behind the project, which he has been developing since he joined the University in 2010. The program will be founded with a select group of current undergraduate students who will be grandfathered into the program with a crop of incoming students.
The program will enhance participants’ professional and graduate school applications and provide preferential applicant status for graduates who choose to pursue their career paths at any of LMU’s post- baccalaureate degree programs, including the LMU-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine or LMU-Duncan School of Law. Additionally, LMU will designate Honors Housing for residential students in the program to help create an atmosphere conducive to collaborative learning.
The program requires scholars to complete an honors core that includes 100, 200, 300, 400 and 499 courses; complete a total of 26 honors program approved courses; complete a minimum of one honors course per year; complete one honors service-learning experience per year; participate in one honors program social event per semester and complete the honors thesis project and defense before a student and faculty panel.
Faculty mentorship will also play a role in the program. This will take place through collaboration in the thesis project, additional instructional and tutorial time as well as research opportunities. Honors courses will be taught exclusively by faculty members in their specialty.
It’s just another step in LMU’s goal to raise the academic bar for its students.