National Collegiate Honors Council


Date of this Version



Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, 2022, 23(1): 135–36


Copyright © 2022 Emily McAndrew


As part of the National Collegiate Honors Council’s (2022) collection of essays about the value of honors to its graduates (1967–2019), the author reflects on the personal and professional impacts of the honors experience.

In May of 2021, I moved to Washington, D.C. It was the middle of the pandemic. I had only been to D.C. once for a National Collegiate Honors Council conference. My partner was graduating law school and had just received a highly esteemed post-graduate fellowship in North Carolina. I was doing well in my global health job at Duke University. It would have been easy to stay static. Yet, we collectively came to the decision to move to a new place where we knew practically no one. I knew that I wanted to challenge myself and push my comfort levels to see what all was out there, professionally and personally. My experience in Honors literally gave me the exposure to this city and many others, but more importantly it gave me the tools and experience to bet on myself and try new things.