Spring Semester Welcome & Update from the Dean

Welcome back, Honors Scholars!

First, thank you to our first-year students for helping us reach a nearly 95% response rate on our student survey this past fall semester. Woohoo! We’ve learned so much from you. The feedback provided by participants in all of these surveys has been extremely valuable in our ongoing strategic planning. We can do things that directly impact the quality of your experience in and through the college in ways that participants have told us are important. We can do this because the information they have given us helps us make the necessary arguments to support our plans. We cannot do what we need to help you without you! Be engaged with us!

I have more to say below (and I hope you’ll take the time to read through it), but I want to start with a quick overview of what I’ll be getting into and other things that you should know about and/or do:

  • Explore our website for helpful information about all the opportunities available for you as a member of the Honors College. In particular, I want you to know about different support (e.g., scholarships) and experiential learning opportunities. You’re doing that now if you’re reading this message on the website. Great! Keep going.
  • Students who anticipate graduating in Spring 2023 should be in touch with the Honors Advisor, Sande Yentes. Graduating honors students will be invited to the Honors Convocation on Friday, 21 April 2023, where they will be recognized for their achievements and receive their Honors Medallion. Students will be asked to RSVP for the ceremony.
  • Students seeking upper-division HON course credits in Fall 2023 (e.g., HON 300, HON 480, HON 483, HON 484, HON 488, and HON 489) should look for an invitation from the Honors Advisor in February to schedule an Honors Advising appointment in the week after the Spring Break. These courses are all by permission and require you to be advised. Also, each of these courses, except HON 480 (the Honors Seminar course), is characterized as experiential learning.
  • Learn about all courses being offered for honors credit in Fall 2023 at the Honors Fall Preview event on Tuesday 21 March (before Honors Advising appointments) at 4 PM in Smith Hall 154.
  • Students who are dissatisfied with what we offer for sections of HON 480, should talk to those professors that they would like to see teach one. I mean that sincerely. This is an invitation for you to be engaged! Here’s the deal: The Honors College does not have its own faculty. We borrow them. We can only schedule seminars from those voluntarily proposed to us by willing faculty. And those faculty must also have willing departmental chairs–who are the ones that permit their faculty to teach for us. My message: If you want seminars in subject areas that you would be most happy to take for honors credit, encourage those faculty to propose a seminar right NOW. They can do so here: https://www.marshall.edu/honors/teaching/. The deadline is Monday 23 January 2023. There’s no better incentive to faculty.

Alright, now some details. I know there are more exciting things to do on the internet than browsing the Honors College website. That said, you should explore our website fully. Seriously! It pains me when students tell me that they “wish I knew about ________” before it was perhaps too late to take advantage of an extraordinary opportunity. These missed opportunities range from the curricular to the co-curricular, benefits that we offer students in the college and (notably) scholarships and grants that we offer to our students. Many of these opportunities and initiatives are a product of what survey participants have indicated are important.

I’m reaching out today about our support and experiential learning opportunities. It’s crazy how hard it is to give away money. I mean that. Year after year, I’m literally stunned by how students leave money on the table for lack of exploring the possibilities and, if having done so, taking steps to apply. I’m urging everyone to explore and take a few steps to earn the distinction and potential reward. It’s up to you!

The Honors College is known for challenging students to develop their full academic and personal potential. We are also committed to supporting Marshall students in their quest to identify, plan for, and win scholarships, fellowships, and other forms of assistance that will help them in their research and creative endeavors as students, to study abroad, pursue graduate school, or aid them in their professional development. On our website, we have a detailed list of  support opportunities. These are organized by level of competition. Some are national, others are across the university, and some are only available to students in the Honors College. They are further organized by the student population they are meant to serve. Some are only available to students admitted to Marshall as high school students who still need to start their degree programs (i.e., incoming, first-year students). Then, there are others for students who are now at Marshall. We refer to these students as “current” or “continuing,” which are meant to convey that these students are here at Marshall.

Students who are now at Marshall are current/continuing students. For these students, if you’re looking for competitive scholarships and grants on our site, make sure you’re looking for that population. Right now, as many as four are open to you. Three require applications and these applications close on 03 March 2023. Another (for students in HON 480 seminars) requires a nomination from a faculty member.


I’d also encourage you to explore our “Experiential Learning” link. Again, the opportunities and initiatives detailed here have been shaped by what those who have participated in our surveys have told us they want to see. Find your next adventure in learning here! Don’t miss out.


Let us know if you need anything.

Brian A. Hoey, Ph.D., Dean