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December 2013

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In This Issue

Election Results

Congratulations and welcome to the new members of NCHC's 2014 Board of Directors!

Here are the results:

Vice President
Jerry Herron, Wayne State University

Douglas Peterson, University of South Dakota

Board of Directors, Professional (3 year term)
Lopa Basu, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Suketu Bhavsar, California State Polytechnic University Pomona
Mike Sloane, University of Alabama Birmingham
Naomi Yavneh, Loyola University New Orleans

Board of Directors, Student (1 year term)
Lauren Bach, Minnesota State University, Mankato
Jordan Rutland, Paine College

Board of Directors, Student (2 year term) 
Mara Steven, Loyola University New Orleans
Anna Wiegand, Ball State University

The New Old England: Manor, Market, and Mosque Faculty Institute
June 29 - July 4, 2014
Registration Deadline: February 1, 2014

Harlaxton ManorRegister now for the New Old England: Manor, Market, and Mosque Faculty Institute.  This institute will use Place as Text pedagogy to explore varied ways the English have constructed their sense of “Englishness” over time. The practice of constructing a sense of national self is particularly exciting to consider because England faces significant cultural changes involving social class, religion, immigration, and industrialism. The beautiful Harlaxton Manor will be the Institute’s base. Built in 1837, it is an ideal setting from which to consider these topics, both in itself and in juxtaposition with Grantham, Lincolnshire, an area rich in history, contradictions, and contested identities.

The New Old England: Manor, Market, and Mosque Institute, co-sponsored by the Honors College at Western Kentucky University, is designed for honors and non-honors faculty and administrators who wish to incorporate interdisciplinary and field-based elements into their courses and programs.  Alumni of earlier Institutes have used City as Text™ pedagogy in disciplines ranging from the arts and social sciences to math and science, and in sites from campus to town to foreign locations.

For more information, see the online brochure.  The registration deadline is February 1, 2014.

Facades and Secrets of Lyon, France
July 14-20, 2014
Registration Deadline Extended: February 20, 2014

lyon-1The second institute being offered in 2014 by the Honors Semesters Committee takes place July 14-20, 2014 in Lyon, France. Lyon is historically important as the Roman capital of Gaul, as the economic and cultural center of labor unrest in the nineteeth century, and as a locus of resistance in World War II.  Today, Lyon is a global gastronomic center that has recently embarked on ambitious urban redevelopment projects, offering a rich accessible laboratory for both historic and contemporary exploration.

Facades and Secrets of Lyon is designed to help honors and non-honors faculty and administrators incorporate experiential strategies and interdisciplinary and field-based elements into their courses and programs.

For complete details, see the online brochure.  The registration deadline is February 20, 2014.

2013 Award Winners
Congratulations to the 2013 NCHC Award Winners.  Complete results are available on the conference webpage.

2013 Conference Evaluation
Thanks to everyone who participated in the Annual Conference in New Orleans. If you have not yet done so, please complete the online evaluation to help us plan for Denver. Mark your calendar for November 5-9, 2014 and join us in Denver.

2014 Conference

denverIt was great seeing so many of you in New Orleans last month! That conference will be a hard act to follow, but our conference planning committee and professional staff are well into planning the 2014 NCHC Conference in Denver. You will be hearing much more about the 2014 conference in the months ahead.

The conference hotel, the Sheraton Denver Downtown, is located in the heart of the mile –long, 16th Street pedestrian mall, which includes shopping, dining and entertainment options.  There are a number of museums within walking distance or a cab ride away. And, we hope to offer an excursion into Rocky Mountain National Park.

The conference theme is “Thrill of the Climb,” an especially appropriate theme as we consider the challenges we face in honors education against the backdrop of the Rocky Mountains. A highlight of the conference will be a plenary session and workshops with Erik Weihenmayer, a blind adventurer, author, and motivational speaker. Erik has climbed to the summit of the tallest mountain in every continent. He is currently training to kayak the entire Grand Canyon.  I expect that he will provide us, especially our students, with a very inspirational message and a challenge to dream big!

Barry Falk
2014 Conference Chair 

Call for DIH Topics

Dear NCHC Colleagues,

Thanks, one more time, to all of the NCHC members who shared their expertise during the 2013 Developing in Honors (DIH) Workshop--and to Jim Ruebel and everyone involved with putting together an outstanding conference in New Orleans.

Believe it or not, the time has come to solicit topic ideas for the next edition of DIH that will be part of our 2014 national conference in Denver.

On behalf of Trisha Folds-Bennett, Ricki Shine, and myself (2014 DIH co-chairs), I would like to invite you to send your DIH topic ideas to me at  This is your workshop, and we look forward to receiving your topic suggestions.

If you have participated in DIH and have any general thoughts or suggestions about the workshop, please feel free to pass them along as well.

Please complete the electronic form by February 1, 2014.

Thanks in advance for your help in structuring Developing in Honors for 2014 in Denver.

We hope to hear from you soon!
Jessica Roark

2014 Membership Renewal

2014 Renewals were sent October 28, 2013.  Your NCHC membership is on a calendar year basis and expires December 31, 2013.  If you prepaid your 2014 membership, you will not receive a renewal notice. If you have any questions about your membership status, please contact the NCHC office at or call 402-472-9150.

PLEASE note the January 31, 2014 deadline for all memberships.  As a courtesy to those institutions not able to process a membership renewal during the current membership year, NCHC grants a grace period for the month of January.  If your institution needs to pay in January, please pay by credit card or make sure your check reaches NCHC before January 31, 2014.

Our new database does not allow extensions so all membership accounts will be closed on January 31 unless payment has been processed by NCHC. 

2013 Membership Report

888  Institutions
1      Lifetime Professional membership
394  Professional memberships
15    Non-institutional Professional memberships
10    Affiliate memberships
73    Student memberships
21    Honorary/Lifetime memberships

As always we appreciate you renewing and thank you for your continuing membership in NCHC. Your NCHC office is available to assist you Monday-Friday, 7:00 am to 5:00 pm CST.

Final Call for HIP Submissions

Honors in Practice is accepting submissions for the 2014 volume.  The deadline is January 1, 2014.  Submissions and inquiries should be directed to Ada Long at

Below you will find the editorial policy and publication guidelines for paper submissions. The NCHC Publications Board revised the Editorial Policy at its March meeting, so please read it carefully.

Editorial Policy for Honors in Practice

Honors in Practice (HIP) publishes articles about innovative practices in individual honors programs and nuts-and-bolts issues of concern to the members of the National Collegiate Honors Council.  HIP employs a double-blind review system.  Essays should present ideas and/or practices that will be useful to other honors administrators and faculty, not just descriptions of “what we do at our institution.”  Essays should advance a thesis located within a larger context such as theoretical perspectives, trends in higher education, or historical background.  Essays should also demonstrate an awareness of previous honors discussions of the topic.

Submissions and inquiries should be directed to Ada Long at

Submission Guidelines

We accept material by e-mail attachment.  We do not accept material by fax or hard copy.

If documentation is used, the documentation style can be whatever is appropriate to the author’s primary discipline or approach (MLA, APA, etc.), but please avoid footnotes.  Internal citation to a list of references (bibliography) is strongly preferred, and the editor will revise all internal citations in accordance with MLA guidelines.

There are no minimum or maximum length requirements; the length should be dictated by the topic and its most effective presentation.

Accepted essays are edited for grammatical and typographical errors and for infelicities of style or presentation.  Authors have ample opportunity to review and approve edited manuscripts before publication.

Call for JNCHC Submissions

The next issue of JNCHC (deadline: March 1, 2014) invites research essays on any topic of interest to the honors community.

The issue will also include a Forum focused on the theme "Honors for Sale."  We invite essays of roughly 1000-2000 words that consider this theme in a practical and/or theoretical context.

The lead essay for the Forum, attached to this message and available on the NCHC website (, is by Gary Bell of Texas Tech University. His essay—titled “The Profit Motive in Honors Education”—sounds the alarm about creeping privatization that raises costs and reduces quality in public services, including education. Bell warns against the takeover of honors education by for-profit companies whose primary purpose is making money, not serving and educating students.  Contributions to the Forum may—but need not—respond to Bell’s essay or the issues he addresses.

Questions that Forum contributors might consider include: Do for-profit companies like American Honors ( have value to add to honors programs, educators, and students, or are they trying to cheapen the honors experience and enrich their own coffers? Similarly, will MOOCs expand honors opportunities or depersonalize honors education and reduce faculty to teaching assistants for celebrities? Are these new developments in higher education designed to enhance education or increase cost-effectiveness, and are these two goals compatible or mutually exclusive? Is there something special about honors that will be lost if it is put on the auction block? Should honors programs be entrepreneurial to assure their survival and keep pace with the broader culture? Is the pressure for large number of honors students and higher graduation rates coming from a profit motive or from concern for good education? To what extent are profit motives in honors being driven by forces outside of honors and to what extent by inside forces? What are the effects of the professionalization of honors, e.g., the shift from volunteer administrators to high-paid deans and directors, the proliferation of honors administrators, the increased focus on fundraising, the transition of honors directors/deans from scholars/mentors to managers/salesmen? Are similar changes within the NCHC, as it has shifted its focus from students to administrators, making it a more effective advocate for honors education or for self-advancement?

Forum essays should focus on ideas, concepts, and/or opinions related to “Admissions and Retention in Honors.”  Examples from one’s own campus can be and usually are relevant, but essays should not simply be descriptions of “what we do at our institution.”

Please send all submissions to Ada Long at

Call for Papers: NCHC Teaching and Learning Monograph III
Breaking Down the Barriers between Teaching and Learning

This is a call for papers for a proposed monograph, sponsored by the Teaching and Learning Committee. How does excellence in teaching and learning break down barriers in higher education, and beyond?

We are especially interested in the following submissions:

  • New perspectives on teaching in honors—submissions from faculty who are new to honors teaching
  • Essays that articulate methods for excellent teaching online, or in other atypical settings
  • Essays that demonstrate a truly interdisciplinary approach
  • Faculty Development essays with a broad appeal (i.e., even beyond the honors context)
  • Essays that address what (if anything) is distinctive about honors teaching and learning

Submissions on other topics are also welcome. The monograph will have three basic sections:

  1. Theoretical Issues: The Barriers between Teaching and Learning
  2. Practical Pedagogy: Novel Approaches and Outstanding Examples
  3. Promoting Better Teaching: Honors Faculty Development

Scholarly articles should be 8,000-10,000 words and include a 200 word abstract. The deadline for articles is January 31, 2014.

Please address any questions about this monograph to the co-editors, Jim Ford ( or Alison Primoza (

Call for Syllabus Submissions

NCHC publishes sample honors syllabi on the NCHC website: Early in each calendar year, the list of syllabi is updated. All NCHC members are invited to submit sample syllabi for possible inclusion on the website. Submissions are carefully screened according to the criteria outlined below.

The deadline for submission is January 1, 2014.

Guidelines for Online Publication of Syllabi

Syllabus submissions are carefully reviewed before selection for publication on the website, and they must follow a standard format. The general criteria for inclusion are:

  • originality and interest of topic;
  • clarity of presentation;
  • adherence to required format; and
  • usefulness to a significant portion of HIP readers.

We assume that any course for which a syllabus has been submitted was exceptionally successful.

The general categories for which we invite submissions at the freshman, sophomore, and junior/senior levels are:

  • interdisciplinary, team-taught courses;
  • course in the arts and humanities;
  • courses in the social and behavioral sciences;
  • courses in science and/or mathematics; and
  • courses in professional fields (engineering, business, education, nursing, etc.).

We have a special need for syllabi in the social and behavioral sciences at all levels, for professional fields at all levels, and for science and math syllabi at the freshman and sophomore levels.

The absolute maximum length of any syllabus accepted for publication is 4 pages, with margins (left, right, top, and bottom) of no less than once inch and with Times New Roman font size 12.

All submissions and inquiries should be directed to Ada Long at

Call for Fellows of NCHC Nominations
The NCHC Awards and Grants Committee is pleased to invite nominations for Fellows of the National Collegiate Honors Council. This award will be given annually to distinguished members exemplifying a commitment to honors education. Fellows will be selected based on:

• NCHC, regional, and/or state honors organization leadership
• Scholarly activities relating to honors education
• NCHC regional and/or state honors special events, institutes, etc.
• Recognition for outstanding honors teaching on the home campus
• Assistance provided to honors programs/colleges (site visits, consulting, etc.)
• Content of the nomination letter
• Demonstrated record of sustained commitment to honors education
An individual must be nominated by three (3) current NCHC members in order to be considered for selection as an NCHC Fellow.

Please consider nominating as many NCHC members as you believe to be deserving of this recognition. The deadline for nominations is 5 PM (CT) January 31. Nomination materials are available at For more information contact Kate Bruce or Ann Eisenberg, co-chairs of the Awards and Grants Committee.

Call for Portz Fellowship Applications

The Portz Fellowship Committee of the National Collegiate Honors Council will be accepting applications in January from undergraduate honors students for Portz Fellowship Grants. This award is named for Dr. John and Mrs. Edythe Portz, pioneers in honors education, whose support of imaginative ventures in undergraduate education has benefited college students in Maryland and throughout our nation since the late 1960s. The highly competitive award is open to students at NCHC’s 800+ member institutions in the United States and beyond. Previous Portz Fellows have presented their work at NCHC annual conferences.

The Portz Fellowships support original and extended interdisciplinary projects for up to eighteen months. Applications for the next round of grants will be begin in January. If you would like more information about the Portz Fellowship, please contact Dr. Patrice Berger by email, or 402-472-5425.

Applications and information about the Portz Fellowship are available online.


Jim Ruebel, Ball State University

President Elect
Barry Falk, James Madison University

Vice President
Jerry Herron, Wayne State University

Immediate Past President
Rick Scott, University of Central Arkansas

Kyoko Amano, University of Indianapolis

Douglas Peterson, University of South Dakota

Board of Directors
Lauren Bach*, Minnesota State University, Mankato
Lopa Basu, University of Wisconsin-Stout
Suketu Bhavsar, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
Joe King, Radford University
Soncerey Montgomery, Winston-Salem State University
Mary Kay Mulvaney, Elmhurst College
Barbra Nightingale, Broward College
Fatima Ojeda Rojas*, Paine College
Marjean Purinton, Texas Tech University
Jordan Rutland*, Paine College
Zachary Samples*, Eastern Illinois University
Mike Sloane, University of Alabama Birmingham
Laurie Smith Law, Iowa State University
Art Spisak, University of Iowa
Mara Steven*, Loyola University New Orleans
Anna Wiegand*, Ball State University
Naomi Yavneh, Loyola University New Orleans
John Zubizarreta, Columbia College, South Carolina

*Student Board Member


Cindy Hill, Executive Director

Carolee Martin Brink, Membership Director

Teri King, Finance Manager

Amber Klaus, Project Coordinator

Trish Souliere, Technology Manager

Betty Talley, Director of Operations


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