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ERIC Number: EJ1081484
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1559-0151
Relevance, Rigor, and Return on Investment: How Honors Enhances Education
Haas, Thomas J.
Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, v16 n2 p45-49 Fall-Win 2015
In an opening address to the university community a few years ago, Thomas Haas, President of Grand Valley State University set out three key concepts (three contemporary Rs) to guide thinking as the institution grows and develops. They all have to do with student success: relevance, rigor, and return on investment. Haas articulated that the education provided must be relevant and address the needs of the region and the world now and in years to come; it must be of the very highest quality and impart to students the best concepts and the greatest skills; and it must be a good value that pays off handsomely for the student and for all they touch. In this article, Haas asserts that the Frederik Meijer Honors College at Grand Valley State fulfills those Rs admirably and helps the whole university live up to them. Importantly, the college strives to create an honors experience in which students "thrive": it maximizes their experience by engaging them deeply in learning to succeed in their academic and vocational goals; by establishing positive relationships with their faculty, peers, and others; by fostering their active citizenship on campus, within surrounding communities, and across the globe; and by encouraging a positive outlook on circumstances and life. The return on investment for the institution is considerable. The honors program is one of the most expensive in the university, but the value it has brought more than compensates for its cost. The Meijer Honors College has markedly enhanced the reputation of the university, increased its ability to recruit the brightest and most capable students, improved student outcomes, and helped boost the metrics so that they are the envy of most other institutions in the state.
National Collegiate Honors Council. 1100 Neihardt Residence Center, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, 540 North 16th Street, Lincoln, NE 68588. Tel: 402-472-9150; Fax: 402-472-9152; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A