National Collegiate Honors Council


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From: Housing Honors, edited by Linda Frost, Lisa W. Kay, and Rachael Poe. National Collegiate Honors Council Monograph Series (Lincoln, NE: 2015).


Copyright © 2015 by National Collegiate Honors Council.


The honors college at Arizona State University (ASU) had its roots in the distributed honors programs in departments and schools that began in 1958 as ASU became a university by a statewide popular vote. It started as an honors college when it was created in 1988 by order of the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR), the only honors college in the state established in this way. The founding dean of what was at first called the ASU University Honors College was Ted Humphrey, who had earlier directed the university honors program. Professor Humphrey had very specific ideas about what the nature of honors education and honors living communities should be, and—along with the design of a yearlong, first-year course teaching critical thinking and writing called “The Human Event”—Humphrey negotiated a living space for about 170 honors students in a separate building near the center of the ASU Tempe campus called McClintock Hall. The first honors students moved into their 80 rooms in McClintock in 1988 at the same time the honors college was formed, so it was a residential college from its inception. The students shared the 33,000 square feet with three classrooms and six offices for honors college staff.