Honors Student Spend Spring Break Volunteering in Costa Rica 

Georgia Southern students at La Paz Waterfalls 
Costa Rica was the destination for this year’s newest Honors alternate break trip. Led by Dr. Leticia McGrath, nine students traveled to La Carpio, Costa Rica during spring break to work with impoverished families on community restoration projects such as painting houses and planting gardens. In addition to community service, the students toured San Jose, Manuel Antonio National Park, and the Arenal Volcano and natural hot springs.
The Georgia Southern University Honors Program is designed to foster the development of a critical sense of inquiry, a spirit of creativity, a global perspective and an ethic of civic responsibility. With your investment, the University Honors Program will continue to enrich the lives of students at Georgia Southern University.  

The eighth annual Honors Research Symposium will take place at the Nessmith-Lane Conference Center on Friday, April 17, 2015. At this event all of the graduating honors seniors present the results of their honors thesis research. In addition, select underclassmen will deliver poster presentations of their work or works in progress. All are welcome to attend.

This year, we are adding a banquet following the symposium which will be designed for student presenters, their mentors, as well as alumni. We plan to seat alumni with current students so that they have a chance to interact with current students and share their advice. Also, a smaller group of alumni will deliver a panel presentation and Q&A to provide further advice and support to students. Invitations will be forthcoming. 

For questions, contact Dr. Steven Engel at

Honors Alumni are encouraged to update their information here!

Five Years of the Alternative Break Trip to Camp Blue Skies at Camp Twin Lakes 

Opening Day for Camp Blue Skies at Camp Twin Lakes.  Our students, camp staff and volunteers, and campers get ready for another great week of fun.
A five year milestone was reached this spring break as honors program students again volunteered their time with Camp Blue Skies, a camp for adults with developmental disabilities.  The camp partners with Camp Twin Lakes in Rutledge, GA to give its campers a fun-filled week of activities like paddle-boating, zip-lining, sports, and arts and crafts. Dr. Jerri Kropp (Child and Family Development) and Dr. Brent Wolfe (Therapeutic Recreation) have led the trip all five years.  A handful of students have participated in this trip each of their four years at Georgia Southern, and this year featured the return of some alternate break trip alumni.
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Celtic Celebration Concert

Standing: Dr. Steven Engel, Georgia Southern University; Willie Keilthy, Vice Chairman of the JFK Trust; Dr. Howard Keeley, Director of the Center for Irish Research and Teaching at Georgia Southern University; Pattye Meagher, GHS Director of Communications; Dr. Stan Deaton, GHS Senior Historian and Paul Gleeson, Ireland’s Consul General in Atlanta. Seated: Sean Connick, CEO of the JFK Trust; Paul Kehoe, Government Chief Whip & Minister of State to the Taoiseach; and Dr. W. Todd Groce, President and CEO of the Georgia Historical Society
In conjunction with The Center for Irish Research and Teaching, Georgia Southern University Honors Program hosted a Celtic Celebration Concert on March 15. Two world-renowned musicians, Joanne McCabe and Eric Sweeney performed at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist. In addition, special guest Jimmy O’Brien Moran, a Master Uilleann Piper, performed on stage. The concert was in support of student research during this summer’s Honors Inquiry in Ireland study abroad program. The University Honors Program would like to thank the creators, the sponsors, and the attendees for a successful event.

Olivia Carter Takes Center Stage (and the rest of it as well)

Olivia Carter and her prop presentation at the American College Theater Festival.
Behind the curtain, many of Georgia Southern University’s own students contribute to the magic seen on stage in Theatre South productions. Honors student Olivia Carter’s (theatre ‘15) backstage work has transformed the Blackbox Theater from a bare room to other, fantastic worlds through her prop and set design. Carter’s hard work has not gone unnoticed; her prop designs for Hamlet and Race earned second place in the Allied Design competition at the annual American College Theatre Festival (ACTF).
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Chemistry Student Mariana Hernandez Publishes Research

Maria Hernandez works in the Chemistry Lab. 
Students join the Honors Program for the research opportunities it presents them.  Mariana Hernandez (chemistry ’15) has taken her research to the next level: publication.  An article she co-wrote with Toan Tran, Dhruvil Patel, and Dr. Ji Wu, “Temperature and pH Responsive Microfibers for Controllable and Variable Ibuprofen Delivery,” was recently published in the journal Advances in Materials Science and Engineering
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To learn more about Honors at Georgia Southern, how to support honors activities, or become involved in honors alumni events, contact Honors Director Steven Engel at
Copyright © 2015 University Honors Program, All rights reserved.

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Newsletter Creators:
Sarah Ryniker        Editor-in-Chief 
Maria Amiel           Design-Editor-in-Chief 
Nicole Puckett       Writer 
Aleyna Rentz         Writer