New Honors Program focused on interdisciplinary collaboration

Following student and faculty input and evaluating close to 50 honors programs in colleges and universities across the country, Dominican has launched a new Honors Program focused on interdisciplinary collaboration throughout the Honors community.

“Honors students, whether here at Dominican or elsewhere, yearn for this kind of innovative out-of-the-box thinking,” says Dr. Gigi Gokcek, the new director for the Honors Program. “We will continue to give them more and varied offerings in terms of honors courses.”

Currently there are 140 students in the program. Beginning this academic year, some courses will be streamlined to still meet student learning outcomes. Gokcek said it’s a win-win proposition for students – who now have more flexibility to pursue a second major or minor, or take advantage of Dominican’s many elective courses – and their professors.

“This basically champions professors to continue their innovative approach to designing courses,” she says. “It is also providing more faculty opportunities to teach honors students.”

Gokcek, who recently attended the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference in Seattle, said the new program continues to offer honors students up to six units overload free of tuition as well as priority registration. These are some of the features of the Dominican’s Honors Program.

In addition, Gokcek believes Dominican’s Honors Program will create a greater sense of community among the students.  Its curriculum is now divided into three stages – Foundational for first year students, Exploratory for second year students, and Integrative for a culminating experience with the Honors Capstone project.

“They bring it all together for that interdisciplinary experience, working with students from all majors,” says Gokcek, who has been a professor in the Department of Political Science and International Studies at Dominican for a decade.  “That’s what we want them to walk away with in this program.”


October 18, 2016