Oct 012003
Authors: Leigh Pogue

The Honors Program has more than 900 students with an average

GPA of 4.06, a 29.5 ACT score and a 1293 SAT score.

It is a program that provides a small community where students

can get connected to other students and faculty, said Robert

Keller, the program director.

Housed in Newsom Hall, the Honors Program provides its members

with a variety of social events, leadership and service


Members of the Honors Program have priority access to Newsom and

roughly 50 percent of first-year students choose to live there.

Those who choose not to live in Newsom still have access to all the

programs and services offered by the Honors Program.

Tim McCoy, a senior mathematics major in his second year in the

Honors Program, chose to live in Newsom for a second year in a


“It’s nice that people are a little more academically focused,”

McCoy said. “There are more quiet places to study.”

Cori Knudten, a sophomore history major, also chose to live in

Newsom for a second year because it is “a better study


Along with the benefits of its living community, the Honors

Program provides a “distinct, higher level of learning” Keller


Students in the program are required to take four honors

seminars, two honors courses in their major and write a senior

honors thesis.

Keller said a major aspect of the learning environment is the

“true seminar.”

“In a true Socratic seminar the class is small, it’s not a

lecture base,” Keller said. “Students will do the reading and come

into class prepared to discuss. It’s a student-centered active


For Knudten, these types of seminars are a reason she applied to

the Honors Program.

“It lets you practice your writing and speaking skills,” Knudten


Another aspect that drew Knudten in was the smaller class sizes.

In most Honors classes, the number of students is 15 to 25.

Honors courses also go more in-depth into a certain topic. McCoy

said they are not necessarily harder, but they have a little extra


Not only does the Honors Program help the students directly

involved, but it also improves the learning environment at CSU as a


“I am convinced you elevate the entire quality of the

undergraduate program,” Keller said.

Through the Honors Program CSU is able to competitively recruit

top students, he said.

“If we don’t offer the best, we don’t recruit the best,” Keller

said. “And we’re serious about that.”




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