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Honors Program Activities and Events

honors students walking in a line blindfolded on nature trail part of trust-building on the honors outdoor orientation trek

HOOT (Honors Outdoor Orientation Trek) view photos

Click Here to Register for 2016 HOOT

In August, incoming first-year Honors students arrive on campus a day earlier than the rest of the first-year students. The next day, when everyone else is moving in, honors program faculty, peer mentors, and first-year students board buses to travel to a local camp for a day-long retreat.  We solve problems, play games, eat, and participate in team-building exercises before the regular orientation begins later that evening. This is our most successful and highest rated event of the year.

Living Learning Community

The Honors first-year students live together in a living learning community with a Resident Assistant who is an Honors student.  The RA, Honors Program Director, first-year seminar faculty, peer mentors, and Honors Council work together to provide programming, service projects, and social activities to foster the unique needs of honors students.   Honors LLC is in Schlosser Hall.  All Honors students are welcome to live in the Honors LLC.

Annual NCHC National Conference view photos

J Nathan Matias NCHC presenterEvery Fall semester the Director and a small group of honors students attend the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference, held in major cities around the country.  Presentations of individual research and honors program ideas by faculty, administrators and students are the hallmark of this conference.  Students also attend the Northeast Regional Collegiate Honors Council Conference.

Leadership Theory and Practice Service Projects

Every year the students in leadership seminar class plan community service projects and supervise first-year students in their execution.  This year we participated with the Chaplain's Office and the Center for Civic Engagement in the White House Interfaith Campus Service Challenge and served the Power Packs Project, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, Church World Service Lancaster Refugee Resettlement Program and several local agencies serving food to clients in need.  Some past clients served by the leadership class projects include Masonic Homes, Elizabethtown Public Library, Greater Elizabethtown Area Recreation Services, Willow Valley Retirement Communities, Lancaster City Public Schools, House of His Creation, Milagro House, Vantage House, Brittany’s Hope, The Gate House, and Elizabethtown Child Care Center. 


Every year at Homecoming, the Honors Program hosts a reception for current students, family, friends, and alumni.  In 2015, the Honors Council presented the inaugural Honors Outstanding Teaching Award to Dr. Tom Hagan, Associate Professor of Chemistry.

Graduation Banquet

Every spring during Senior Week, we treat the program graduates to an elegant celebration luncheon. Students receive their graduation medallions and graduation gifts from the program.

Examples of Honors Courses

Many of these Honors courses routinely take field trips and invite prominent guest speakers to class.

  • HFYS 100 Big Theological Questions
  • HFYS 100 Shakespeare Through Performance
  • HFYS 100 Diversity, Identity and Social Justice
  • HFYS 100 The Bible as Literature
  • HFYS 100 Cryptologic Mathematics
  • HFYS 100 Gotta Have It! The Science of Addiction
  • HAN 111 Understanding Human Cultures
  • HBI 111 Introduction to Biological Sciences
  • HPC 105 Introduction to Psychology
  • HPC 111 Introduction to Neuroscience
  • HHI 112 History of Modern Asia
  • HCH 207 Chemistry and Politics of AIDS and Cancer
  • HMA 275 Math and Music
  • HMA 270 History of Math
  • HEN 252 Humor, Irony and Despair in Modern Literature:  Joyce, Kafka and Beckett
  • HEN 253 Gaelic and Anglo Irish Ireland
  • HRE 285 Amish, Brethren and Mennonites in the United States since 1850
  • HRE 289 Communal and Utopian Societies
  • HSO 224 The Amish in Modern Society
  • HON 205 Leadership Theory
  • HON 301 Thesis Preparation
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