Like us on Facebook  View on Instagram  Follow us on Twitter  View our profile on LinkedIn

Kent State Honors College 
Parents & Friends Newsletter
May 8, 2020
Blanket Hill, the site of the May 4, 1970 events, blooms with daffodils during 
the May 4 50th Commemoration.

End-of-Semester Greetings from 
the Honors College Dean

Dear Parents and Friends,

After what may be one of the most unusual final semesters on record, the  Class of 2020 is moving on to new opportunities in graduate programs or early career positions.  We are so proud of them for their  resilience and determination to complete their degrees and move forward.  Wherever they go, we hope they remember their roots in the KSU Honors College, their best experiences, great friendships, and keep those friendships going in the exciting years to come.  

This summer may be a summer like never seen before for our honors students, parents and friends.  There will be new challenges but also new opportunities.  This pandemic has brought forward in sharp relief the fact that we are all living in a truly global society, and the impacts of Coronavirus are found in every aspect of economic life.  This is also a time to strengthen family bonds and emphasize the strengths and heart of what "home" means.  At the bottom of this newsletter are useful links that may help you and your student during this summer, and contact information to reach us during these summer months.  You may be wondering, what will Fall be like at Kent State?  This university, like all the colleges and universities across the country, is looking into several models for how to begin the fall semester. For a short overview to read or listen to, here is a great summary of ideas about what campuses are looking at for the coming year: 

Once our plan is in place, we will certainly be reaching out to you with the news.  

Let us know if your student needs advice or information this summer about coursework or internships, we will be here!

Please join us in congratulating the Honors College Class of 2020, as we know they have worked very hard to get to this moment in their academic careers!

Kind Regards,

Dr. Alison J. Smith, Dean
Honors College

Flashback Photo: The Honors College Class of 2020 poses for a photo during Freshmen Move-In, August 2016.  
A Freshman Honors Colloquium course meets for the last time, via virtual connection.

End of a Most Unusual Semester - Now, What's Next?
Preparing for the Future, and Beyond

For Kent State seniors, it's all a matter of remembering where you're from, and continuing to strengthen those connections and bonds formed during the past four years.  As our senior honors students join the Golden Flashes alumni family of more than 251,000 alumni worldwide, we encourage them to stay connected by joining a regional or special interest alumni chapter.  Don't forget to get connected with the Young Alumni Council, and update contact information with the university!

Whether graduating seniors are continuing their education in graduate school, or entering the workforce, Kent State University's Career Exploration and Development provides a slew of career ready resources, including resume/cover letter resources and graduate school prep.     

For Kent State undergraduate students, we'll see you again next academic year! Don't forget, the university will host a Virtual Career Week, beginning on Monday, May 18 through Friday, May 22 in Handshake. This virtual career fair will give students an opportunity to connect with employers about position availability!  Also of note, the Honors College has extended the deadline for Class Project Agreements (C.P.A.) to noon on Friday, July 17, 2020, along with all appropriate attachments.  Please visit the Class Project Agreement webpage for more information.    

For all Honors College students (graduating or not), we have an Honors College 'Coffee Talk' scheduled for Friday, May 15 at 1:00 p.m.  Please encourage your honors student to join us, whether it's to say farewell for the semester, or simply see some familiar faces from campus.  Visit the link to register.
During the fall 2019 semester, 49.2% of KSU honors students commuted to campus.

Finding Fulfillment as a Commuter 
in the Honors College
For many Kent State students, commuting can be key to collegiate success

When students decide what college or university to attend, one of the biggest decisions that follows is whether to live on campus or commute to campus from home or an apartment. While living on campus is an integral part of the college experience for some students, each of these options has its perks and drawbacks, and students who commute should know that they have plenty of company, particularly at Kent State: according to data from Institutional Research, 49.2% of Kent State Honors College students commuted to campus during the fall 2019 semester. Read the rest of the article by Honors College writing intern, Nina Palattella, here.
Honors Alum Remains Strong During Worldwide Pandemic
Small Business Shifts Manufacturing Production; Donates to  Food Bank

Honors College alumni are doing great things! Check out the recent article from the  Kent State University College of Business Administration, highlighting how 2018 CEBIpitch winner Anne Skoch '18, has weathered the storm with her company during these difficult times.

    Anne Skoch, owner of Anne Cate, during a Career 
                Conversations event in fall 2018.
Senior Honors Thesis/Project

Students who wish to graduate with university honors, general honors, or departmental honors from the Kent State University Honors College must complete and successfully defend a Senior Honors Thesis/Project.

Of the spring 2020 graduates, 27 Kent State students have completed and successfully defended a Senior Honors Thesis/Project. Many of these students had to adapt to defending their thesis via video conferencing, rather than in person, due to the closure of campus for COVID-19. 

Of those spring graduates, 11 are expected to graduate with University Honors, 7 with General Honors, and 9 with Departmental Honors.

A few of the recent topics and thesis titles include:
  • "Brick And Mortar 2.0: The Future Of Brick-And-Mortar Fashion Retail"
  • "Assessing The Impacts Of Green Roof Substrate, Plant Community And Mycorrhizae On Runoff Quantity And Quality"
  • "Characterization And Whole-Genome Sequencing Of Staphylococcus Aureus Collected From Boston Rats"
  • "Chains"
  • "Transgender Experiences In Healthcare"
  • "Using Optical Illusions To Enhance Projection Design For Live Performance"
  • "'We All Wanna Die Too': Emo Rap And Collective Despair In Adolescent America"
  • "The Economic, Political, And Social Determinants Of Electronic Government Adoption"
  • "Treating Neuroinflammation With The Novel Hormone Irisin"
  • "Effects Of Early Life Neglect On Cocaine Use During Adolescence And Subsequent Effect On FGF-2 Levels In Adulthood"
The Senior Honors Thesis/Project is a 6-credit-hour independent project.  It may be a research, creative, or applied project and is completed under the direction of a faculty member.  Regardless of the nature of the project, the final thesis is a formal written document.

For samples of theses in various disciplines, please view our Thesis Archive.

For more information on how your honors student may begin the process of starting a thesis, please visit our website.

Lacross to Lab: Cawood Shines On and Off the Field
Honors student balances sports competition and lab research

The Honors College is incredibly proud of all of our Honors College student athletes, especially  Kent State University Golden Flashes  lacrosse player and honors student Meghan Cawood, who continues to excel both on the field and in the research lab. Visit the link to read her story.

May 4, 50th Virtual Commemoration Program 2020
May 4, 50th Virtual Commemoration Program 2020

Kent State University's 50th Commemoration 
of May 4, 1970

In keeping with the commitment to honor and remember those tragic events, the Kent State University is hosting a virtual program to mark the historic 50th Commemoration of May 4, 1970.  To view this program, please click on the video above, or watch it on the official 50th Commemoration YouTube page

Calling All SENIORS
Share Your Virtual Commencement Photos

Honors College Seniors and Parents: Share your photos and videos of your graduation regalia by using the hashtag of  #FlashesForever on social media as we near our special virtual commencement recognition ceremony at  11 a.m. on May 9

Don't forget to tag the Honors College with these photos on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook!

Join us in the celebration at .

Sean Fitzgerald - Autism Story
Sean Fitzgerald - Autism Story

Junior journalism student Sean Fitzgerald shares what it's like being a resident assistant (RA), co-hosting a sports radio show and 
living on the autism spectrum.

Read more about Honors College student Sean Fitzgerald, who shares his experiences living on the autism spectrum, while also taking an active role in activities and programs in the Kent State community!

University Resources 

Kent State Honors College
The Kent State Honors College and its advisors are a valuable resource. If your student has questions or is having difficulty, please have them reach out to their honors advisor. We are here to help.  Questions/concerns may also be sent to

Kent State's Coronavirus Response
If you have questions regarding Coronavirus/COVID-19, please call 1-833-427-5634, email or visit the Kent State Coronavirus website.

One Stop for Student Services

Kent State University's One Stop for Student Services will take calls to help answer questions and concerns at 330-672-6000.


University Health Services and Psychological Services
Please visit the University Health Services website for the most up-to-date information regarding service availability.

Keep on Learning
Student remote access resources are available at Keep On Learning.

The Step Up, Speak Out website includes resources available to all Kent State campuses, as well as 24-hour hotlines.  

211- Get Connected, Get Help
211 is a vital service that connects millions of people to help every year.  To get expert, caring help, simply call 211 today or search for your local 211 at


Follow us on Twitter    View on Instagram


Honors eNewsletter Footer