Inductees welcomed into honors program

Pradyot Sharma

Staff Writer

The Troy University Honors Department held its annual induction ceremony on Tuesday, March 21, at the Baptist Campus Ministries.

The ceremony is purposed to recognize freshmen who have successfully completed a semester in the honors program after taking the honors colloquium course, the honors version of the Troy Orientation course.

Induction into the honors program also requires a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.25. Attendees were provided dinner and presented with a certificate recognizing their achievement.

“Scholars enter their first year and a lot of things can happen,” said Kenneth LaBrant, director of the university honors program.  “This ceremony is a culmination of the year for these students really, not only the fact that they got into the program and met the requirements, but also that they could make it through every other challenge that arose.”

LaBrant said that the program is structured to provide both a challenge to students and a network for them.

“The program is meant to be dual faceted, challenging them (students) for what they know, but also giving them the chance to make connections,” LaBrant said.

Chelsea Cottle, a freshman political science major from Panama City, Florida, said the program has provided skills for her.

“The honors program allows me to offer myself more challenging courses, better myself academically and equips me to think critically,” Cottle said.

Jim Sherry, a professor of modern languages and an honors department faculty member, said that the university has endured growth during the past years.

“There has been a lot of growth, especially since we changed from Troy State to Troy University,” Sherry said.

“We used to have one credit hour freshman seminars that didn’t bode very well,” Sherry said. “Now, we have a diverse curriculum and a structure program along with three credit hour seminars.

“That makes all the difference in the world.”

Sherry was one of the three founding faculty members of the honors program at Troy and has previously served as director of the program.   

Both Sherry and LaBrant pointed out that the honors department will be celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2018.

Laken Johnson, a junior biomedical sciences major from Crestview, Florida, who works alongside LaBrant as his assistant, said the honors program has provided a community.

“The honors program has been an incredible asset to my education at Troy,” Johnson said.  “It (the program) has introduced me to a community of people who encourage each other, learn with and from each other and strive to be the best.

LaBrant shared some advantages of being involved in the honors program including early registration for classes and the benefit of having smaller class sizes.

“Students not only get early registration, but also if they take the honors version of some classes, they have a better student faculty ratio than most general studies classes,” LaBrant said.

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