The Honors Association, a new campus club, aims to help students in the College of Letters & Science Honors Program better interact and collaborate with each other.

The club is still in its nascent stages, but is projected to be fully developed by Fall Quarter 2011. Although membership is not mandatory for honors students, anyone in the Honors Program program is eligible to join the association.

According to Scott Kassner, Honors Association academic adviser, the new association will aid its members in determining the topics of honors seminars that are traditionally decided by professors.

“When we first started talking, one of the first things [students] raised was that they would like to have a voice in asking faculty to lead honors seminars,” Kassner said.
Rocio Angeles, Honors Program adviser, said this change could potentially increase student and faculty involvement in honors seminars.

“There should be some excitement from the faculty that there are students who want them to teach these classes,” Angeles said.

Kassner said the idea for the new student organization was proposed by Dean of Undergraduate Education Mary Nisbet and spearheaded by a small team of honors students.

“The students really ran with it,” Kassner said. “It is really driven by the students.”

Honors Ambassador Nikki Barrington, a second-year biology major, said the Honors Association is currently seeking feedback about the program’s design from the 1,200 honors students at UCSB.

“We’re really looking for their input on how we can round out their honors experience,” Barrington said. “We want them to have an experience in which they can choose what they learn and create a community.”

Students interested in the Honors Association or the Honors Program can contact Barrington at or