2017 Holiday Celebration Photos

Thank you to all of our Honors community members who joined us last night in Emerson Suites. The Holiday Celebration was a huge success, and we hope you had a great time. Check out our photo gallery from last night below! If you share any pictures of you and your friends, be sure to tag us (@ichonors on Twitter and Instagram, and Ithaca College Honors Program on Facebook)!

One Week Till Our Annual Holiday Celebration!


We are a week away from our annual Holiday Celebration, featuring food, games, crafts, raffles, and more! This can’t-miss event is sure to be a blast, especially with our all-new Ugly Sweater Contest! Wear your tackiest sweater and win some exciting prizes. Please join us next Tuesday, December 13th, from 7:00-9:00 in Emerson Suites as we celebrate the holiday season, end of the semester, and YOU, the Honors community! We can’t wait to see you there.

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.

Save the Date! Honors Holiday Celebration 12/13 from 7:00-9:00 p.m.

You are cordially invited to the annual Honors Holiday Celebration. Please join us in Emerson Suites for snacks, raffles, surprises, and more! This year we’ll be holding an ugly sweater contest (more details below). We look forward to celebrating all of the hard work the Honors community has done this semester, and look forward to seeing you there!

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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 


FLEFF Blogging Internship Applications Open


Film Festivals and Blogging: FLEFF 2018
Dr. Patricia R. Zimmermann
CRN 43244 HNRS 20051 T 6:50-9:30 

Application Process: 

Admission to the seminar and FLEFF blogging internship requires a short application and is competitive.

Requirements:  Must have one full year of courses at Ithaca College and at minimum sophomore standing. Students previously enrolled in the FLEFF Festivals course as FLEFF Fellows or in the Honors seminar in Participatory Cultures have priority as FLEFF blogging interns.  Overrides available for students outside the Honors program for this seminar and internship.

(Note:  students with sophomore standing through credits but who are currently in their first year as Ithaca College students are not eligible.  These students should enroll in the one-credit/P/F FLEFF Festivals that runs during the festival FLEFF Festivals GCOM 12000 CRN 43325, where they will be considered FLEFF Fellows.)

To apply:

Write no more than a one-page letter  (500 words maximum) explaining your major, GPA, your academic interests, why you are interested in participating in FLEFF 2018 as a blogging intern,  and what particular aspects of FLEFF interest you (review the FLEFF website before writing your application).   Also note if you have taken the FLEFF Festivals course or the Honors Seminar in Participatory Cultures.

Send your application letter to:  fleffblogging2018@gmail.com

Applications are now open and will close November 14.  Applicants will be notified of admission to the seminar and the internship on a rolling basis, so apply early.                  

Seminar Description

This advanced seminar engages competitively selected students in an intensive and immersive experience in the 20th Annual Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival (FLEFF) as bloggers and festival ambassadors. Students serves as interns for FLEFF 2018.

The course provides students with a coordinated blend of theory, history, and practice. The course works within an international and transnational focus. It explores and analyzes the histories, operations, politics, creative industries impact, and programming of festivals as a critical nodal point in the entertainment and arts industries through significant books from the scholarly literature.

This seminar provides an avenue to learn professional blogging for film festivals and arts/entertainment organizations, with students writing for the FLEFF blogs in a very public, high profile way, interviewing the festival team and festival guests.  It also provides training in learning how to be part of the staff of a festival by thoroughly learning all aspects of the history of FLEFF, its mission and vision, its financing, partnerships, programming, the current year’s programming, and current year’s goals for audience development and engagement as well as visibility.

Finally, the course probes the purpose of festivals as a place for embodied, meaningful, and significant conversations about issues of importance in the world. Blogging interns have special access to festival guests and special events and convenings.

Special notes:  bloggers need to commit to full immersion in FLEFF during FLEFF week both on and off campus. However, classes come first. These sessions will replace some seminar sessions post-festival as they cover required class meeting sessions. Blogging interns receive a FLEFF staff t-shirt, lanyard, and a complimentary festival pass.

IC Honors Seminar Spotlight: Architecture of Health: Race, Place and Inequality

Professor Stewart Ayuash, Chair of the Department of Health Promotion and Physical Education is teaching a seminar this semester for the third time on the place of intersectionality in the architecture of health! Learn more below:

health-inequalityPlease describe your seminar in one sentence. “We discuss how we think about health and illness from everywhere and every why from beginning to end and in between, or as much as time allows.”

Describe your classroom style in one sentence. “Tutorial: we read, we write, we present, and we discuss, we read again.”

What is one thing you hope students will take away from your seminar? “A larger understanding of health and illness, where they came from, why they mean different things to different people, and what we can do about them.”

What is one piece of advice you would give to students? Ideas have consequences.”  

Want to know more?: “This is the third time I am teaching this course. I think I finally figured it out. Thanks to my former students for the patience and endurance.”

Books for the course will likely come from this list (some, not all):

A. Verghese, My Own Country: A Doctor’s Story

T. Coats, Between the World and Me 

E. Biss, On Immunity: An Innoculation

G. Francis, Adventures of Being Human: A Grand Tour from the Cranium to the Calcaneum

C. Off, Bitter Chocolate: Investigating the Dark Side of the World’s Most Seductive Sweet

S. Johnson. The Ghost Map: The Story of London’s Most Terrifying Epidemic- How it Changed Science, Cities, and the Modern World

Check out the full list of seminars here and the whole list of spotlights here.

IC Honors Seminar Spotlight: Spiritual Journeys

Philosophy and Religion professor Rachel Wagner is teaching a seminar this semester on Spiritual Journeys! Professor Wagner has included some of the books you’ll be reading as well, so learn more below.

Screen Shot 2015-10-11 at 12.12.26 PMDescribe your seminar in one sentence. This course is an introduction to inter-religious engagement, using the medium of autobiographical travel narratives, novels, and films as a way into the discussion.

Describe your classroom style in one sentence. “I utilize a mode of discussion blended with impromptu lecture, made active by student participation and fired by open-ended questioning.”

What is one thing you hope students will take away from your seminar? “I hope students will leave this seminar deeply appreciative of the varieties of religious expression, more curious about religious difference, and confident in engaging in open-ended deep discussions about religious values and beliefs with others, whether they share the convictions of their conversation partners or not.”

Screen Shot 2015-10-11 at 12.07.44 PMWhat is one piece of advice you would give to students? “This question is too hard to answer without knowing the students personally! Advice (at its best) is a product of conversation, wherein one person with more experience in a thing can guide those with less experience. So honestly, depending on the conversation, it’s just as possible that students could give *me* advice!”

Want to know more?

“Students interested in the course should know that there is a lot of reading, but that it is all very interesting and story-based. There are also a few films, and we are likely going to be beta-testing a card game on inter-religious engagement that was constructed by game and religion researchers at RIT. Students may also be interested to know that this course is not “just” for believers. Indeed, atheists, agnostics, and generally curious folks are more than welcome. One of the books we read is about how atheism figures into the conversation about inter-religious interaction. No past experience in religious studies is required.”

Screen Shot 2015-10-11 at 12.11.56 PMCheck out the full list of seminars here and the whole list of spotlights here.

IC Honors Seminar Spotlight: Opera Immersion, Le Nozze di Fiagro

Timothy Johnson and Erik Angerhofer are collaborating on this year’s opera immersion seminar, which concludes with a trip to the Met in NYC to see Le Nozze di Fiagro. Learn more below!



Describe your seminar in one sentence. Using Le nozze di Figaro (“The Marriage of Figaro”) as a vehicle for exploration, this seminar will provide students with an opportunity to interact and engage with the many forms and facets of art synthesized in opera—culminating with a live performance at the legendary Metropolitan Opera.

Describe your classroom style in one sentence. We use an interactive teaching style emphasizing direct student engagement.

What is one thing you hope students will take away from your seminar? By engaging students’ senses through direct contact with music, drama, scenery, lighting, costumes, makeup, and many other aspects of opera production, we hope students will consider further exploration of opera.

What is one piece of advice you would give to students? At some point in history, opera singers were the “rock stars” of their time. Why is that, and how can it still be relevant today?

Read more:



Check out the full list of seminars here and the whole list of spotlights here.

IC Honors Seminar Spotlight: Creativity & Madness

Professor Mary Beth O’Connor is bringing back her popular seminar this semester. Check out more about it below!

iStock_000017748904Small90_610_300_s_c1_center_centerDescribe your seminar in one sentence. “Creativity & Madness is an investigation into the relationship—or lack thereof—between various kinds of “mental illness” and creativity.”

Describe your classroom style in one sentence. “Discussion-based with an emphasis on students identifying and exploring interests of their own in this field: a particular artist, musician, writer, scientist who has been associated with “madness” or an issue in the field such as whether there is a relationship between bipolar disorder and creativity, whether people can create when they’re depressed, how “madness” has been portrayed in literature and film, what the role of the unconscious in creativity is, etc.”

What is one thing you hope students will take away from your seminar? “I hope that students will take away the skill to undertake research in an area of their own choosing and come to understand the complexities involved in the issues in the field of creativity and madness studies.”

What is one piece of advice you would give to students? “Question your assumptions.”

More to know: “Each of us also takes on a creativity project, and we share these projects at the end of the semester. I encourage students (and myself) to try something new, something they feel they’re not good at, etc. and see what happens: painting, writing poems, songwriting, sculpture, making pottery, drawing, filmmaking, even game-creation!”

Check out the full list of seminars here and the whole list of spotlights here.