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Undergraduate

Why Be an Honors Student?

Landon Dierks is a senior journalism major from Mitchell. He is a student in the Van D. and Barbara B. Fishback Honors College.

College is already hard enough, so why would you want to make it even more difficult?

That’s a question many students grapple with when deciding whether to pursue honors distinction upon graduation, but to more than 800 students, South Dakota State University’s Van D. and Barbara B. Fishback Honors College is the place to be.

By taking on an honors course load, there will be more work, but the work is oftentimes more fulfilling. Students have the opportunity to take a colloquium course taught by faculty from different disciplines on diverse topics—current and future issues in health care, mathematics and the arts, media and the election and an honors study abroad experience are just a few examples. The required independent study can be daunting but offers the chance to do research or a literature review in an area that interests you beyond the normal classroom assignments.

No matter your area of interest, year of study or stress level, the honors community will always be there. Led by dean Rebecca Bott-Knutson, adviser Hanna Holmquist and secretary Sandy Newman in Honors Hall 119, each member of the honors faculty and student body cares for one another. The smaller class sizes allow students to form close bonds with each other and the faculty.

In addition, the resources and networks allow you to achieve educational goals far beyond the classroom, and the opportunities you find through the Fishback Honors College and the connections you make are second to none.

Honors might not be for everyone, but with the opportunity to pursue and participate in elevated learning, close community and a good challenge, you owe it to yourself to give it a try.

Fishback Honors College Visit Day is Oct. 25. Register to see what the Fishback Honors College is like firsthand. 

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