Honors Program


The overarching purpose of the OTHP is to provide Oregon Tech students with a complementary academic curriculum and a collection of extracurricular learning experiences that promote a more well-rounded future career professional, a socially responsible person, and connected and liberally educated student: this is the idea of the professional as a person. A professional, understood in this way, is a person connected to many communities, locally and globally, scholarly and civic-oriented, and is a person who strives to make the most of those connections with others to lead a more meaningful life.

To graduate from the Oregon Tech Honors Program, students must accomplish the following:

Honors Course Requirements

All Oregon Tech Honors Program (OTHP) students must complete a required number of Honors courses (see below), Honors Designated or Honors Option courses, including a capstone thesis/senior project/externship (the Honors Project) supervised by the honors program and presented to an honors faculty committee. To graduate from the University Honors Program, they must have a cumulative GPA of 3.5.

First Year:

HUM 107 Honors Idea Seminar I, II, and III (1 credit each)
Satisfies social science general education requirement.

Second Year:

HUM 207 Honors Question Seminar I, II, and III (1 credit each)
Satisfies humanities general education requirement.

First through Final Year:

Additional Honors Option Courses:
6-9 total credits of courses with an “A” suffix, i.e., HUM 207 01A

Senior/Final Honors Thesis/Project/Internship

Honors 401: Honors Thesis (3 credits)
Or: Honors Section of Junior or Senior Project (3-6 credits) [could be ESSE]
Or: Honors Section of Internship/Externship (3 -6 credits)

Minimum of 18 total honors credits for graduation with Honors. Honors courses taken as independent study, seminar, or online all may be included in that total if they are taken as an Honors Option course. All Honors courses must be completed with a grade of “B” or higher.

Honors Idea Seminar I, II, and III

Ideas shape the world, and ideas change the world. The Honors Idea Seminar is a three-term sequence of one-credit seminars for first-year OTHP students devoted to thinking through the past (fall term), present (winter term), and future (spring term) of one idea that has contributed to our world’s betterment, for which we should be thankful, and which has made it possible to live in the world today. Students read required texts each term, go on local field trips, and learn about ideas from guest speakers.

Honors Question Seminar I, II, and III

The art of asking important, meaningful, and productive questions is valued in the Honors Program. The Honors Question Seminar is a three-term sequence of one-credit seminars for second-year OTHP students devoted to understanding and working with questions. Students study James Ryan’s Wait, What? in the fall, the current Edge Annual Question each winter term, and A More Beautiful Question in the spring term, through required readings, develop the ability to construct the kinds of questions that will make them more capable career professionals and greater contributors to society.

Honors Designated and Honors Option Courses

In addition to the two Honors Designated seminars (above), students are required to complete 2-3 additional Honors Courses. These can be Honors Designated courses, like an Honors section of WRI 122. Classes that are presented as Honors Courses will have an A attached to their course number. Or these can be courses taken as Honors Option courses, for which a student and faculty will develop a different or additional set of course requirements and submit an Honors Option Course Contract to the Honors Program to allow students to earn official Honors Course credit.

In addition to meeting the course requirements outlined above, Honors Program students also must complete an Honors Project, which may be, but is not limited to, a community service project or an academic project, as a requirement for graduation from the Honors Program. A service-learning project, for example, fosters civic engagement and prepares students to become leaders in their communities. An academic project might provide students with a sample of writing when applying to Graduate School.

Honors Project

Students are required to produce a significant project in order to conclude their time and study in the Honors Program. Students develop their projects and determine the scope of their projects during their first or second year in the Honors Program. They may work with faculty in their major and/or outside their major, as well as their Faculty Mentor, and the Director. The first year Honors course sequence (HUM 107) introduces students to various ideas and related issues, and may assist them in identifying potential projects. Students submit their proposed project to the HPC and the Director for approval during their first program year, but no later than the start of their second program year. Students will then execute the project during their remaining time at Oregon Tech. (A draft Honors Project Proposal form is available.)

Students determine the scope of the Honors Project, but at a minimum the Honors Project should involve the equivalent of several hours a week over a year’s time (roughly 100 hours per student total).

Students will prepare regular progress reports (at least once per academic quarter) for submission to the Director and/or to the HPC.

Participate in Scheduled Honors Activities

  Honors Orientation, Induction Ceremony, Advising Meeting, and Last Class

Students are required to attend an all-day Orientation to be held the Wednesday prior to the first day of classes at the start of their first year in the OTHP. Additionally, Students will attend an Induction Ceremony that same Wednesday evening. During the first week of their participation in the OTHP, students will attend an Advising Meeting during which time the Director or Assistant Director will review the OTHP Curriculum and Program Requirements in toto. All Students are asked to attend specific graduation activities, the Last Class, as well as other to be designated events and days of significance to the OTHP.

  Honors Experiential Learning in the Outdoors (HELIOS) Fieldtrips

Students are required to participate in regularly scheduled Honors Program experiential learning field trips: approximately one per term for their first year in the program. These activities include one weekend educational excursion each academic quarter, for one day of the weekend. Examples of such excursions include trips to Crater Lake National Park for snowshoeing, tours of the Tule Lake Unit, WWII Valor in the Pacific National Monument, which includes “the Tule Lake Segregation Center, the largest and most controversial of the sites where Japanese Americans were incarcerated during World War II,” and field trips to Upper Klamath Lake by canoe. All required activities are at no cost to the student.

  Honors Connections Events

It is important for OTHP students to connect across the disciplines, with the campus, and to be connected to their community. Each term, the Honors Program will identify talks, lectures, films, or other opportunities as “Honors Connections” events. These events serve to foster a sense of community among the students, expand their cultural horizons, and generally broaden their sense of engagement with the world and community as Honors Program students. OTHP students are expected to attend four such events per academic year. Multiple opportunities will be available each term.

  Honors Connections Events Journal

We ask students to reflect on how their experiences at these events connect them to the world. The Journal provides students with an ongoing opportunity to reflect on both critically and creatively the impact of these events on their lives and how such events cause us to rethink our connections to others in the world.

  Our World to Lead and Serve (OWLS) Projects

Honors Program students also recognize that in addition to connecting to their world academically, they can make important contributions to their world through service and leadership projects. Our World to Lead and Serve (OWLS) Projects require all Honors Program students to complete 50 hours of approved leadership and service projects or activities each year for the first two years in the Honors Program. The OWLS Projects may benefit the Oregon Tech Honors Program, the Oregon Tech campus and students, the Klamath Falls community, or another city or place that is important to the student. Students may fulfill these projects individually or as part of a group. See the documents below for examples.

OTHP Student Support

Honors Program students, Honors Program Core Faculty, the Director and Assistant Director will all share in the responsibility of encouraging a student’s progress through the program. Honors Program students will meet with the Director or Assistant Director each fall to discuss courses and activities, and the student’s experiences generally in the program. To support the goal of progress and completion, students will receive an Honors Program Progress Toward Graduation report, and this report will account for all requirements toward graduation from the Oregon Tech Honors Program. (This report form is forthcoming.)