Director’s Report on Our Fifth Year
Jeffrey J. Haugaard, Ph.D.
Director of The Honors College
Professor of Counseling Psychology
The conclusion of our fifth year marks the end of the initial developmental stage of The Honors College at the University at Albany. Our second class of entering freshmen graduated this year and all the basic elements of the honors-college experience for honors students and professors, and for the institution of UAlbany, are in place. Our challenge over the next few years will be to refine the Honors Experience at UAlbany - adding elements as their value becomes apparent, modifying elements as strategies for improvement are identified, and dropping elements that no longer assist students and professors as they strive for excellence in coursework and research. The strong foundation created over the past five years should be the platform for continuing development, not a place for rest.
Of particular benefit to our initial development has been the support of the university administration and the deans and other administrators of the UAlbany Colleges and Schools. In a time of budgetary angst, they have continued to provide the financial and personnel support that has allowed us to continue our striving for excellence. The faculty of the university has supported our efforts by teaching challenging honors courses and by mentoring honors students as they complete their honors research or creative work. Professors’ ability to teach honors courses and mentor the many more students who are writing honors theses than a few years ago has been supported by their department chairs and other department administrators. The Residential Life program continues to provide the strong foundation for our honors community.
We ended the year with 381 students, including our graduates (7 more than last year). The academic performance of most of our students was very high and almost all the honors professors report that teaching an honors course is challenging and rewarding. Most of the students have formed a sense of community within their graduating class through their residence-life experience and their coursework, and feel that they are part of an important new undertaking at UAlbany. Our 50 graduates this year raise the number of our alumni to 120.
The entire fifth year report is available.