For Immediate Release: 5/10/2011
Grounded in Knowledge and Truth, Honors Students Pursue Impressive Post-Grad Paths
Providence, R.I.-- Many are pursuing post-graduate research opportunities, some are heading to the corporate world, while others are choosing the non-profit arena.
Regardless of where they are going, this year's Liberal Arts Honors Program graduates point to the Honors Program as giving them a distinctive competitive edge as well as an ability to know truth and bring that understanding to bear on their lives beyond Providence College.
The Honors Program--currently celebrating the 50th anniversary of its first graduating class--is a unique academic opportunity that provides students with a more in-depth and rigorous version of the College's Core Curriculum. Honors students are challenged to do more reading, more writing, and more seminar discussion--developing a greater breadth of knowledge, intellectual acuity, and aptitude for creative thinking.
There are 117 Honors Program graduates this year.
With Commencement Week upon us, many Honors Program students have confirmed post-commencement plans. One student was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to teach in Bulgaria next year, nearly two-dozen students have definitive graduate school plans, and an additional two-dozen have job offers. The majority of the remaining students are still weighing their options.
Highlights of Honors Program students' plans include:
Allison Evans '11 (Monson, Mass.) will attend the University of Connecticut for a master's degree in music theory on full scholarship. This is a rare honor as most scholarships are awarded to students pursuing Ph.D.'s in this program.
Patrick Brunell '11 (Holden, Mass.) has taken a position as an associate in tax consulting at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Amelia Curotto '11 (Orlando, Fla.) will be working as the program assistant for Fairfield University's Study Abroad Program in Florence, Italy, in the fall.
Alexandra BetGeorge '11 (DeWitt, N.Y.) received a Fulbright Scholarship to teach English in Bulgaria next year.
Thomas Cheely '11 (Chicago, Ill.) will start an accelerated program in the Film & Broadcast Program at Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy in Chicago this summer.
Emily Wheeler '11 (Norwell, Mass.) will be conducting a year of service as a Youth Service Opportunities Project fellow in New York City, coordinating service programs for middle school and high school youth.
The Honors Advantage
As they prepare for their post-graduate academic and/or career opportunities, Honors graduates speak about how this program has not only given them advantages for said opportunities, but it has also given them a proper lens with which to view the world.
Heading off to medical school this fall at Brown University, John Butler '11 (Riverside, R.I.) said the Honors Program has prepared him well to study medicine because, while doctors must know science, they must also know people.
"It was only by reading texts like Dante's Divine Comedy and Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, and really getting to the heart of what the authors were saying in seminar, that I learned about what it means to be a human person," he said.
Butler said this is especially important today as medical professionals are frequently criticized for failing to view patients as human beings.
A summa cum laude graduate, Butler was influenced profoundly by his professors in the Honors Program. He said that professors like Dr. Brian Barbour, Dr. Mario DiNunzio, Dr. Richard Grace, and Dr. Anthony Esolen have inspired him to grow in wisdom. "By the lives they lead, they have inspired me to grow in holiness," Butler said.
Ayushi Sinha '11 (Mumbai, India) said the Honors Program set the academic standard high right from the start of her college career. Sinha, who is graduating with magna cum laude honors, will pursue a Ph.D. in computer science at Johns Hopkins University this fall. She noted that her Honors courses encouraged her to think about issues independently and to analyze topics and questions in several different situations.
"This helped me to explore my creative abilities and taught me to examine issues from different people's perspectives, which will help me be innovative in my research career at graduate school," she said.
Patricia Carroll '11 (Merrick, N.Y.) said that the Honors Program was the main reason she was drawn to PC. Carroll, who will join Nestle USA's Sales Development Program, believes exceptional professors in the program taught her not only what to think, but how to think. The Honors Program has allowed her to discover how all disciplines are interconnected, she said.
"It is important to appreciate and have an understanding for other majors and fields of study to understand how they are all pieces in the larger puzzle," she said.
Carroll noted that the Honors Program encourages open discussions where students not only question each other but also question their own ideas and beliefs. "Each student is challenged to find the Truth, Veritas, at the root of every subject and in their own life."
Richard Dell'Isola '11 (Babylon, N.Y.) said that the Honors Program provided him with the critical reading, writing, and reasoning skills necessary to pursue further study--something Dell'Isola is planning to do. Heading off to Binghamton University to pursue a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience, Dell'Isola said that the Honors Program made him want to be a lifelong learner.
Graduating with magna cum laude honors, Dell'Isola's ultimate goal is to play a key role in the progression and development of neurodegenerative disease treatments, and he believes that the well-rounded liberal arts education he was afforded at PC has allowed him to view issues from all angles.