Sean H. McDowell, PhD
Director, University Honors Program
Associate Professor, English, Film Studies
Building: Casey 232
Assistant to the Director
University Honors Program
In consonance with Seattle University's mission, the Honors Program encourages service on and off campus as an important dimension of a student's development as a whole person. Because each student's life situation is different, the Honors Program does not institute service learning as a program requirement nor grant academic credit for service. However, the program assists students in establishing contact with service resource centers on campus. In addition, some students are able to serve on the program's Honors Council. Representatives chosen from the first and second year meet once a month with the program director to discuss matters such as student concerns about curriculum or instruction. The Council also plans events and in general, advises the program director.
Each year the Honors Program sponsors the Touchstone Lecture. The lecture is often given by a faculty member who teaches in the program, but in some years an outside speaker is invited to speak on a topic important to a humanities education. The First- and Second-Year Honors students participate in this event as representatives of the program and interact with Honors Program and university alumni, the university community and the public in general. Occasionally, an Honors graduate of advanced standing in his or her major may be invited to give a Touchstone Lecture.
The Honors Program frequently co-sponsors visiting writers and scholars to the University. Honors students are invited to participate in such events by attending presentations or receptions for distinguished guests. The Honors Program also arranges opportunities for student attendance at Seattle's cultural and intellectual events.
The students have an annual holiday party and an end-of-the-year dinner to celebrate the second year students who are graduating from the program. Honors faculty are invited to these celebrations.