Faculty/Staff

There is great diversity among the Nebraska Honors student population in terms of backgrounds, majors, career paths, co-curricular interests, and hobbies.

However, our students also share many characteristics. Honors students at Nebraska are intellectually curious and possess a commitment to scholarly and co-curricular achievement. They have a demonstrated record of pursuing and succeeding in rigorous coursework. Our students are heavily involved across campus in student life activities from student government to research labs, from marching band to Greek life, from major-based clubs to intramural sports.

What to Expect from Honors Students

Faculty and staff can expect Honors students to want to go beyond the basic concepts of course materials, to engage with the why behind an idea, and to draw connections between the work they are doing in one class and what they are learning in other courses and through co-curricular experiences. Honors students frequently take leadership roles both within and outside of the classroom, enthusiastically engaging in classroom debates and advocating for those beliefs about which they are most passionate across campus.

Nebraska Honors offers students many opportunities to customize their educational experience and engage with it in ways most meaningful to each student. We could not accomplish this without the support of faculty who teach Honors courses, agree to students’ requests to contract their courses for Honors credit, work with Honors students in their research labs and centers, or mentor students as they complete an Honors Thesis or Senior Project. Likewise, we are indebted to staff who support our students through academic advising and help connect them with significant co-curricular experiences. We are grateful of the time and energy faculty and staff on campus generously give to support our students’ success.

Teaching Honors Courses

There are two primary types of Honors courses at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln: department Honors courses and Honors Program (UHON) courses. The most common type of Honors courses are H-designated courses offered through the faculty member’s home department. Examples include ACCT 201H, ENGL 150H, and MECH 200H. Decisions about teaching assignments for these courses are usually made by the department offering the course. The department offering the course may also determine who is eligible to enroll outside of Honors Program students.

The Honors Program also offers seminars at the freshman level (189H sections) and the junior/senior level (395H sections). All 189H and 395H sections should be ACE certified. These are taught by faculty in various departments and supported by the Honors Program.

Learn more about teaching Honors courses

Dr. Berger teaching a seminar
Dr. Patrice Berger teaching an Honors seminar

Faculty Responsibilities: Contracted Courses

Students in the University Honors Program may contract for Honors credit in most any University of Nebraska-Lincoln class with the approval of the professor. The Honors Contract is intended to encourage academic excellence and stimulate intellectual growth by promoting the development of analytical, independent, critical, and creative thinking. It provides an expansion of educational opportunities for students who wish to perform at a level more challenging than that required in the normal course section and creates greater flexibility in choosing classes to complete Honors Program requirements.

Students are encouraged to start the conversation about contracting with professors early in the course, as contracts are due by the end of the 6th week of the semester (1st week of summer sessions).

Online classes are ineligible for contracting.

See Examples and Tips for Contracting

Mentoring the Honors Thesis/Senior Project

Faculty mentors (sometimes called thesis advisors) play a critical role in the student’s Honors Thesis/Senior Project, serving as a student’s primary point of contact and offering guidance in formulating the project’s scope, format, and timelines for completion. At any point during the process, faculty mentors are encouraged to contact Dr. Gwen Bachman or Dr. Tamy Burnett in the main Honors Program office with questions about the Honors Thesis/Senior Project.

Learn more about serving as a faculty mentor

Dr. Madhavan Soundararajan helping a student with undergraduate research
Dr. Madhavan Soundararajan helping a student with undergraduate research

Advising Honors Students

The Honors Program complements and supports the academic advising offered through each student’s primary academic advisor or advising center. Honors advising focuses primarily on Honors requirements and on helping students understand how high-impact practices that enhance their educational experience, such as undergraduate research or education abroad, fit into a 4-year plan alongside major requirements.

We encourage all advisers to talk with students about Honors requirements, as most students have received a textbook scholarship that may be lost if yearly benchmarks of Honors hours and submission of forms are not met.

Anyone on campus with advising-related questions should feel free to contact the Honors Program Office Honors Program Office with questions.

Honors Advising
Dr. Ann Koopmann advising a current Honors student

Honors Faculty and Staff

The Honors Office offers many resources, including access to the core Honors faculty, the Honors Thesis Library, and study spaces for students. The office is generally open 8am-5pm, Monday-Friday, and staff are available to help schedule appointments with core Honors faculty, help students with submission of Honors Program forms, and answer general Honors Program questions.

Meet the Honors Program core faculty and staff

Honors Program staff
Honors Program core faculty and staff. 

Honors Program College Liaisons

In each college on the UNL campus, a college contact has been designated for Honors questions. Individual faculty and students may also contact the main Honors office at (402) 472-5425 or uhon-office@unl.edu, or any of the Honors Program Core Faculty.

CollegeContactPhoneEmail
Agrigultural Sciences & Natural Resources Dr. Madhavan Soundararajan 402-472-9802 msoundararajan1@unl.edu
Architecture Stephanie Kuenning 402-472-7943 skuenning2@unl.edu
Arts & Sciences A&S Advising Center 402-472-4190 asadvisingcenter@unl.edu
Business Administration Dr. Donna Dudney 402-472-5695 ddudney1@unl.edu
Fine & Performing Arts Dr. Peter Lefferts 402-472-2507 plefferts1@unl.edu
Education & Human Sciences Dr. Deb Mullen 402-472-5426 dmullen1@unl.edu
Engineering Dr. David Jones 402-472-3181 david.jones@unl.edu
Journalism & Mass Communications Jill Arth 402-472-8241 jarth2@unl.edu
Public Affairs & Community Service Karen Fulton 402-472-6759 kfulton2@unl.edu
Undecided Jaci Gustafson 402-472-3605 jaci.gustafson@unl.edu