I’m Dr. Regan Lance Reitsma, a member of the Philosophy Department at King’s and Director of Honors for the past eight years. I’d like to say a few words about Honors courses at King’s and about what current students say about their experiences in the program.
The central purpose of Honors core courses is not to be “more difficult” than “mainstream,” non-Honors core courses. Instead, the aim is to create an environment that is intimate, lively, engaging, searching, conversational, and personally meaningful. Honors students come from a wide range of majors and programs like physician assistant, engineering, economics, history, education, accounting, neuroscience, and biology.
One advantage Honors students have is being exempt from several core courses other King’s students are required to take: the College Seminar Course, Effective Writing, and Effective Communication. Instead of taking these introductory, “get ready for college” courses, they’ll complete the writing-enriched, discussion-oriented Honors curriculum—which is, again, not so much “harder” as notably intensive and especially lively.
In my own Honors philosophy courses, I talk in great depth, and with great enthusiasm, with students about questions of deep importance: to be reasonable people, are we obliged to have evidence for each of our beliefs?, or, alternatively, is it sometimes perfectly sensible to believe something simply because it makes you happy?, where does the whole idea of right and wrong come from? Whether you end up being a medical professional, a teacher, an accountant, or an engineer, you'll confront these big questions in the run of life; why not think hard about them in college? The Honors Program will have you doing this in a very focused and intentional way.
Our Honors Program has been working like a fine-tuned machine. Students consistently remark that the courses are very valuable, science-based majors found balance in the humanities, and they report becoming increasingly confident in their ability to write, speak, and understand.
You can find out everything you need to know about applying to the program and specific course requirements on the following pages. If you have any questions or wish to learn more, please feel free to email me below!
Regan Lance Reitsma, Ph.D.
Director, Honors Program
Chair, Philosophy Department
The Honors Program offers challenging courses and an intellectually stimulating community for highly motivated, academically excellent students from all majors. The program offers students individualized faculty attention in their courses and regular faculty interaction outside the classroom in the Lounge and Learn forum and during cultural excursions. Beyond the classroom and the campus, the social awareness project encourages personal development through study abroad or service learning.