Honors Kudos: National Collegiate Honors Council Conference

Congratulations to Zoe Mendrysa ’19, Elena Piech ’19, Honors Academic Assistant/Eastman-Lyon Residence Director Jess Shapiro and former Honors Academic Assistant/Eastman-Lyon Residence Director Katie Hellman on their recent presentations at the National Collegiate Honors Council’s (NCHC) 52nd annual conference.

IMG-1961At the conference, held in Atlanta, Georgia,  Jess Shapiro and Katherine Hellmann (now Honors Coordinator at University of Texas at Tyler) co-presented their session entitled, “A Look at Diversity Education in Honors” on November 10, 2017. Their research highlighted how educating honors students on diversity and social justice issues can be fraught with lack of time, understanding, and uncertainty. They examined how Ithaca College and the University of Texas at Tyler created and implemented a developmental diversity curriculum, and shared assessment data and educational materials.


Zoe Mendrysa presented a session entitled, “Chlamydia Virulence Factors Subvert Host Cell Apoptosis” on November 11 2017. The presentation focused on how Chlamydia trachomitis and host cell interactions by using hypothetical proteins to determine organelle localization.


IMG-1969Elena Piech’s session, “Teaching Activism in Honors Courses,” took place on November 12, 2017. Her research explored how attending activist movements and protests can better enhance students’ understanding of social movements.

While in Atlanta, Elena and Zoe explored the city of Atlanta through NCHC’s City as Text Program, networked with other honors students and faculty from across the country and around the world, and celebrated the unique community created by honors education.The national submission process for the NCHC annual conference is highly selective, with hundreds of students and faculty submitting proposals each year.

We’re so proud of our talented and engaged Honors students and staff, and congratulate them again on their outstanding work.

Represent the Class of 2021 on the Honors Advisory Board!

Nominations for the Honors Advisory Board are now being accepted for the Class of 2021. The position is for the remaining academic year, and you may nominate yourself or a peer. The role of the Honors Advisory Board is to be the student voice of the program. Duties include attending monthly meetings and being an active member in the Honors community. If you have any questions, please contact honorsadvisoryboard@gmail.com.

Apply here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSc8XD1Gdwp4n9bL283RoaoCpS6h83QaD26j6C3MxObtZ6v6Kg/viewform?usp=sf_link 


IC Honors Student Spotlight: Zoe Mendrysa ’19

Zoe Mendrysa is this week’s student spotlight. A sophomore biology major from Kingston, NY – Zoe is deeply invested in student affairs while also pursuing minors in deaf studies and health. She is the secretary of the Pre-Medical Society, a member of Students Today Alumni Tomorrow, and a building governor in Residence Hall Association. In addition, Zoe serves as the Chair of the Honors Advisory Board, a group of honors students that are elected to represent their peers in Honors proceedings. Perhaps you’ve also seen her giving tours to prospective students and their parents as a member of the president’s hosts committee. Zoe is an avid hiker and enjoys cooking as well as playing the french horn. One of her like mottos -“if you stumble, make it part of the dance.” To learn more about this thoughtful and intrepid honors student, continue reading below!


Favorite part about IC:
IC offers endless opportunities. You can major and minor in two completely different fields, there are no restrictions or rules. Even in the music school there are ensembles for all different levels and majors so anyone can continue playing or even start playing. Ithaca College isn’t just based in Ithaca, but world wide. The alumni and networking connections are vast and can bring anyone anywhere. The staff and faculty are all willing to help students exceed through all the different resources on campus that are even accessible post-graduation. Even with clubs there are no restrictions. Whether its Students Today Alumni Tomorrow, Residence Hall Association or the Pre-Medical Society, I am connected to so many amazing people and opportunities.

Favorite Honors seminar that you’ve taken and why:
Wonder Women and Lethal Girls: Feminism in Science Fiction and Fantasy with Katharine Kittredge was an incredible class. It was my first-year seminar. We examined female characters in fantasy and science and how it related to feminism. We watched movies like Barabarella, read Herland, and watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer. We learned skills such as self-defense, sexual assault advocacy, and took a belly dancing class. This class taught me new facts about the history of feminism and sexuality. We had the option to design our own final and express our own creativity which really made me think and open my mind. Not only was Professor Kittredge an incredible professor but was truly passionate about her lectures and students. I would recommend this class to ANYONE!

Coolest opportunity you’ve had through IC and/or the Honors program:
Being a President’s Host is the coolest job! I am really passionate about Ithaca College and the surrounding community so this position allows me to advocate to prospective students. Every week I have the opportunity to meet families and show them around Ithaca (aka home) and answer all of their questions. Occasionally, I even get to have lunch with prospective students and get to really know them. I have a lot of knowledge about Ithaca so feel free to ask me any questions or catch me walking backwards!

We’re always looking for interesting students to highlight in our Spotlight series.

Do you know a really cool first year Honors student? Nominate them here!
Do you know a really cool Honors student? Nominate them here!
Do you know a really cool alum of the Honors program? Nominate them here!

Email ropila@ithaca.edu with any comments, questions, concerns or nominations.