OUR VIEW: HCA a great facilitator for Honors College

Our View

With Honors College students set to elect an Honors College Assembly president Tuesday and Wednesday, it is important to recognize the hard work and accomplishments of this year’s HCA.

The HCA was created last spring in order to enhance the Honors student experience, and it has encountered much success.

Under the leadership of HCA President Hallie Paul, the Assembly has pioneered several programs that have proved beneficial for Honors students. Just last week, HCA sponsored Xpress Night, a regular event to promote student music and creativity, and a documentary screening as part of a series of films about education.

Frequent movie screenings, panel discussions, and artistic events have given Honors students opportunities to learn about interesting topics while networking and building relationships with fellow students. On a campus with more than 30,000 students, and in a college whose enrollment has exceeded 4,000, events like these are critical to getting students engaged. In the future, we hope HCA leaders can follow the pattern that has been created and develop even more insightful and engaging events for students.

Through student engagement, HCA has also been able to bring students’ attention to critical issues and provide them leadership opportunities and insight. These include opportunities within the Honors College itself and other opportunities, such as internships and scholarships.

Last fall, HCA also tied the Honors College experience into the tradition of Alabama football, sponsoring a tailgate for students and securing a place for their members in the Student Organization Seating section.

Paul said she was always really excited to see a good turnout at events and see people making connections and relationships they can continue to build on throughout the Honors College.  “Small events have been just as important. I have encountered people I would have never run into otherwise, because we aren’t the same major or involved in the same activities, at film screenings, book clubs, and tailgates. The relationships have been the greatest benefit throughout the year,” she added.

Both candidates for HCA president this year – Michael Forst and Sarah Hughes – have set goals to expand and improve the HCA and make it a more powerful venue for engaging students in the Honors College. The winner will have an excellent starting point, and a base of students waiting to become a part of something.

All students in the Honors College should take the initiative to vote Tuesday and Wednesday in Nott Hall. Becoming a part of the HCA will not only help individual students meet others with similar goals, it will help build an organization that can unite Honors students for years to come.

The first year of the HCA has been impressive. Going forward, we hope the Assembly will continue to be able to engage students from across the Honors College, and enrich their collegiate experience.

 

Our View is the consensus of the Crimson White editorial board.