Photos of the Honors Program
 University Honors Program
Honors Week Kick Off - Lunch N' Learn with Dr. Logan
Posted on April 11, 2013

"Honors week had a fantastic start April 8th, with an important conversation on microagressions in higher education hosted byStephanie Logan.  Dr. Logan illustrated the definition of microagressions by sharing an informative video with us
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BJL2P0JsAS4 . She explained how we are all prone to microagressions in our lives as a part of oursubconscious, and then students shared their encounters with microagressions.  This was truly an eye-opening/important event, so be sure to check out more honors Lunch and Learn events in the future!" - Dana Potter

"I attended the Lunch and Learn on April 8 put on by Dr. Logan about Racial Microagressions in Higher Education. I came into the Lunch and Learn not really knowing what the topic was about, but it turned out to be a very interesting topic and prompted a lot of discussion. Microagressions are things one person says that offends somebody else without realizing it. It can range from tensing up when you see a hooded African American to making the assumption that women must have children to fulfill their duties as a woman. There are many types of microagressions including race, sex, sexual orientation, economic status, etc. The only way to stop these microagressions is to understand what they are and to point them out to ourselves and others when they become present. We can also become an ally which shows our supports to people of all diversity, not only the ones listed. We must realize how hurtful these statements can be and the short and long term effects they can have on an individual.

I would encourage anyone to attend future Lunch and Learns, even if you do not know what the topic is about or think you are interested in it. It turned out to be an interesting and educating experience for all that attended and a few laughs were also involved. Get involved in honors program events! You will not regret it!" - Jacob Snyder

Honors Game Night
Posted on April 1, 2013

Need a night of fun with your friends to relieve some stress or simply make your day a little better? Then make sure to come to our Honor’s Game Night on April 16th at 8:00 p.m. in the Honors Cottage! We will have Wii games and board games and hopefully some healthy competition to make sure a good time will be had by all. Please bring your own board games and Wii games if you have them.

Peer Leader Applications
Posted on March 26, 2013

Remember when you were a wide-eyed freshman, excited about the idea of college but absolutely terrified about meeting new people and making new friends? Remember not knowing what the buildings were, where your classes met, or how to register for classes for the next semester? Remember being a new honors student, still not sure of what was expected of you? That’s what honors peer leaders are for.

The Honors Peer Program was created to assist incoming freshmen through their first semester at UNI by providing a community of peers and group leaders committed to encouraging academic and social success. Groups are composed of students in similar majors, and the peer leaders are specially chosen to provide the help needed for particular groups and majors. This is an optional program for the freshmen, though, so we understand that not all students will be interested. Your job, as a peer leader, is to make an effort to include everyone who wants to be included.

Peer groups meet during the first six weeks of classes, planning two events and a service project. Leaders must attend an orientation meeting during the spring before the academic year that he or she will be a peer leader. In addition, leaders must also attend the mandatory Social Hour to be held the Sunday evening before the start of classes for the fall semester. This is when leaders and groups will meet and set the date for the first activity! Leaders are also required to attend the first four HSAB meetings from 9:00 – 9:20 every other Monday in the honors program to discuss progress, address challenges, and offer support.

If you love the honors program and want incoming freshmen to feel as welcomed as you did (or even more so!), apply to be a peer leader! Submit applications can be found at here and should be submitted to rhodesl@uni.edu by noon Wednesday, March 27th, 2013.

Profs and Pizza: Dr. Michael Blackwell, Director of the Center for Multicultural Education
Posted on February 22, 2013

On the subject of Black History Month, Dr. Blackwell gave a very well-informed and insightful presentation spanning the beginnings of Black History Month, to the height of the civil rights, and incarceration of minorities in society today.  Black History month actually began as Nergo History Week in 1926 and then in 1976 federal recognition led to the expansion of the week to Black History month.  With thorough and knowledgeable explanations, Dr. Blackwell also discussed the many important events of 1963 that led up to the passing of the civil rights act in 1964: the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the swearing in of Lyndon B Johnson, the March on Birmingham, the bombing of the Birmingham church that killed 4 little girls, and the march on Washington when Martin Luther King Jr. gave his “I Have a Dream Speech” on the eight year anniversary of the Emmett Till killing.  Finally Dr. Blackwell reminded us of the lack of African Americans in higher education especially on our campus here at UNI.  Iowa is the top state for the incarceration of African Americans in the nation, and at UNI the number of African American tenure faculty in certainly less than 10.  Dr. Blackwell ended with the strong reminder and advice that we should all do our part to be involved with diversity.  So in your near future, make the conscious decision to attend more diversity events to celebrate our differences and push us forward into a future of true equality.

Honors Halloween Party
Posted on November 11, 2012
When Halloween rolls around the corner, many college students find themselves wishing they were back in elementary school when everyone dressed up in crazy costumes and had a great time eating sweets and hanging out with friends. Fortunately for some, the Honors Program puts on an event that allows students to do just that! This year's Honors Halloween Party took place on Monday, October 29th at 9:00 in the Honors Cottage. Streamers, spiderwebs, and balloons filled the cottage as students began to arrive in their fun and creative Halloween costumes. While creepy and holiday appropriate music filled the air, students decorated cookies, munched on snacks, and socialized with all sorts of odd looking characters! 
After about half an hour, the costume contest began. Those not participating in the contest watched on as Carl and Ellie (characters from Up), French Toast, a Leprechaun, One Direction, a baby, Disney princesses, Katniss and Peeta, superheroes and more strutted their stuff down the runway. Laughter ensued and awards were handed out. As the night came to a close and people began to leave, an atmosphere of hilarity and excitement still filled the cottage. The Honors Halloween Party is an event to bring out the inner child in all of us and bring us all a little bit closer together. 
Halloween Party
Honors Hayride
Posted on November 11, 2012
Honors Hayride
The annual Honors Hayride is an event that captures the true essence of fall. As students are bundled up in their hats, scarves, and mittens, they get to experience a host of exciting activities while creating memories with those around them. Not only do students get to ride around the countryside sitting on hay bales as horses gently lead the way, they also get to make delicious s'mores around a campfire, sip hot cocoa or hot apple cider, socialize with friends, pet the friendly barn animals, and swing from tire swings in the hay loft. Every year I look forward to this festive and seasonal event, and let's just say, once again, it did not disappoint.
This year, the event took place on October 25th at 6:30. Once we pulled up to Heritage Farm, it was as if I had fallen into one of my childhood storybooks. The big white barn, the huge horses out front, and the smell of straw and the countryside always remind me of how important this event is to me and many others. It provides students with an opportunity to forget about all of the worries and frustrations that come with college and growing up and allows them to be carefree for a little while. Overall, the Honors Hayride is a time of excitement and fun that gives students of all kinds the break that they need; it fosters friendships and makes memories.
Meet Theresa Luensmann!
Posted on October 10, 2012

My name is Theresa Luensmann, and I am this year’s HSAB president. I am a senior biochemistry and biology double major from Manning, Iowa. I was born in Lincoln, Nebraska and then my family moved to Iowa when I was three years old.  I have two older brothers, Matthew and Patrick and one younger sister, Bethany.  My plan after graduation is to attend graduate school to pursue a degree in Higher Education Administration. So basically I want to stay at college for my entire life.

This year I am a second-year resident assistant in Dancer Hall. I absolutely love my job and have a lot of fun spending time with my residents. I also began a new job this year as a Career Guide in Career Services, and I’m really enjoying the time I spend there. When I’m not working, I like to hang out with friends, watch movies, listen to music, and read. I am involved in several other organizations outside of HSAB, including Student Admissions Ambassadors (SAA), National Resident Hall Honorary (NRHH) and Tri Beta (Biology Honor Society).

I love the time that I’ve spent at UNI and have really grown as a person in my time here. I’m excited for everything that my senior year will be, and I’m excited for the future I will have after I finish here. UNI has given me the tools to be successful in the future, and UNI can do that for you too! Take advantage of the opportunities given to you (especially in the Honors program) and have fun!

Up Against the Ropes
Posted on October 2, 2012

Freshmen Honors students teamed up with a handful of HSAB members to tackle the challenges of the low ropes course at Project COPE (Challenging Outdoor Personal Experience), in Waverly, Iowa.  Participants worked as teams to complete activities such as trust walks, scaling a 12-foot wall, and other unique team builders that challenged teams both mentally and physically.  Teams were told to complete each challenge using only the talents and abilities of their team members.  However, each task came with its own wrinkle, including team members being blindfolded, or the entire team being mute.  Camp facilitators took a few minutes after each successful challenge to talk about several key character building terms that may have been exemplified through the challenges.  This allowed participants to discuss how the activities challenged their trust in one another, critical thinking, communication, and problem solving skills. The ropes course allowed the group to grow as individuals while also bonding with those around them. Those who attended had a chance to make connections with other students while also having a fun day outdoors. Some of the events were pretty difficult but all of them were a lot of fun!

Profs and Pizza: Dr. Lees
Posted on September 27, 2012

     Tuesday night, September 25, a dozen Honors students gathered in the Cottage to eat pizza and learn from Dr. Lees at the first Profs and Pizza of the semester, put on by the Honors Student Advisory Board.
      Dr. Lees began by asking us to think of words we would use to describe a typical medieval woman.  I thought of well-behaved, demure, domestic, and he later added silent and oppressed.  Several of us then chose parts to play from the play "The Martyrdom of the Holy Virgins Agape, Chionia and Hierena".  The play is hilarious, depicting the attempt of some pagan government officials and noblemen to spoil the purity of the three virgins and failing in epic proportions due to their protection by the Holy Spirit (spoilers: one character has a sexual encounter with some pots and pans, thinking it's the girls!)  I got to play Agape and it was pretty fun to banter back and forth with the other characters ("What madness possesses you?  What rage drives you three?" "What signs of our madness do you see?" was a favorite line of mine).
      After the read through, Dr. Lees then gave us some information on the author of this play.  Her name was Hrotsuit, and she was a nun.  After our describing words about medieval women, it seems we had some reconciling to do.  Hrotsuit wrote around the year 1000, making her the first playwright since the fall of Rome.  Not the first female, but the first playwright at all!  Her name translates to "a loud/strong voice", and that's just what she was.  She managed to avoid criticism of her plays by anticipating all of it and reasoning why she did things.  She said she wrote "pagan" plays because they attract people, and so she was essentially tricking them into a good message.  But was it really Christians over pagans in her play?
      All of the Christians in the play also happen to be female, and the pagans male.  This is really a story of girl power, where the men are made fools of!  The three virgins are constantly defending not their bodies, but their minds throughout the play.  Not what we thought of for medieval women--try awesome, sassy, strong, and punny!
Overall, it was a fun night, including Dr. Lee's incredibly entertaining rendition of what he thinks Hrotsuit may have sounded like!  She also wrote several other plays in the same vein, and I'd recommend looking her up and reading them (I sure plan to, and they're pretty short plays).
      Keep your eye out for the next Profs and Pizza, Brains and Breakfast, or Lunch and Learn to hang out with another one of our awesome Honors professors and learn about some of the stuff they're really excited about!

Military Mail: Come thank our military heroes!
Posted on September 25, 2012

Would you like to thank our military heroes, but don’t know how? HSAB can help!

On Thursday, September 27, we are hosting a Military Mail event at 7pm in the Honors Cottage.

This is a great opportunity to express your appreciation for the sacrifices that our men and women in uniform make every day. It only takes a few minutes to write a letter to a deployed soldier, but that letter will make their day! Deployed soldiers love these personal letters from back home, and gain a great sense of motivation from them. This is an easy way for all of us to thank our nation’s heroes for what they do.

Please be sure to include a little about yourself, some current events or other interesting information, and a BIG thank you in each letter.

We hope to see you on Thursday evening!

swoosh