National Collegiate Honors Council


Date of this Version



Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, Vol. 17, No. 2 (Fall/Winter 2016).


Copyright © 2016 by the National Collegiate Honors Council.


Often administrators overlook the student voice in developing strategic plans, mission and vision statements, marketing strategies, student services, and extracurricular programming. Engaging students in these areas may enhance students’ cooperation, interactions, responsibility, and expectations. In order to assess honors students’ perspectives and experiences, the present study, rooted in a phenomenological approach, conducted three focus groups of traditional honors students, senior honors students, and honors college ambassadors. Students described their honors experience in three contexts: connectedness, community, and opportunity. This study informed a new vision and a new set of goals for the University of Southern Mississippi Honors College, and it might serve as a model for other honors colleges and programs.