The inaugural cohort of College of Western Idaho’s (CWI) Honors Program wrapped up their first semester and reflect upon what they have achieved as they continue their journey as honor students.
Students in the Honors Program spent the Fall 2022 semester individually looking at their academic and career goals and building the resources needed to achieve them.
CWI President Gordon Jones met with the Honors Program students several times throughout the semester, meeting with some individually. Jones helped facilitate a job-shadow experience with a student and met with another student to talk about transfer and graduate school opportunities.
Students also met with representatives from Boise State University and The College of Idaho about the transfer process and how these institutions might align with their academic goals. The students are now working on hosting a larger transfer question and answer session for Honors Program students — including transfer institutions outside of the Treasure Valley for Spring 2023 semester.
CWI Honors Program strives to not only be an additional course of study for students but also a resource to provide them with out-of-the-classroom experiences.
“The CWI Honors Program is so new, so the opportunities are endless,” said a CWI Honor Program student. “I remember attending an event with CWI administration, and just by mentioning I was a member of the Honors Program, people wanted to talk to me and hear my stories — not only about my experiences in the Honors Program but about my life. I don’t look at the Honors Program as more work and classes but instead an opportunity to expand my knowledge as well as my connections.”
While attending the Honors Program section of CWI 101 Pathways course (CWI-101) and honors classes in the Communication and Philosophy departments, the Honors Program students developed and honed their communication, critical and creative thinking, assessment, and analytical skills. Students collaborated on projects and presented research to each other — research that will serve as the starting point for additional academic inquiry over the rest of their time at CWI.
Because all the students were coming in with different education pathways in mind, students were given multiple perspectives.
“I have learned the world is much more diverse and interesting when listening to my classmates,” said a CWI Honors Program student. “Hearing others share perspectives and viewpoints I would have never come up with, challenges me to think outside the box exponentially. It has been a joy to see and hear everyone talk about things they are passionate and care about.”
The students also developed non-academic skills, such as collaboration and community building. Students believe the small size of the cohort fostered an environment of support and community.
“The Honors Program, for me, was a great environment that made me feel supported by other incredible peers,” shared a CWI Honors Program student. “They gave me amazing advice and feedback, offered new perspectives on things I felt strongly about, and, most of all, I feel like I could call every one of them a friend.”
A new cohort of students will begin their CWI Honors Program journey this spring, taking honors-designated classes and joining the current cohort to being to expand the reach of the Honors Program on campus. Students are looking forward to hosting events and collaborating with established student groups on campus, such as the Beta Sigma Pi chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society.
The application period for the Honors Program is open for Fall 2023. For more information and for the application, please visit the CWI Honors Program page or contact Honors Program Coordinator, Michal Yadlin, at firstname.lastname@example.org.