Program History


Dr. James Griesen, associate vice chancellor for academic affairs, leads a task force with representatives from all undergraduate colleges to establish the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Honors Program.


Dr. Patrice Berger in the 1980s

Dr. Patrice Berger is selected as the Honors Program director in 1986.

Ninety-three students are welcomed into the first class, and the Honors Student Advisory Board is created.


The first three honors graduates walk across the stage, having completed 18 honors hours and a senior honors thesis. Students in the early years attended a weekly common lecture and seminar meetings. Dr. John Janovy, biological sciences, and Dr. Robert Knoll, English, present the first common lectures.


Neihardt Residence Hall
The 1992 Honors Program Student Advisory Board

The program outgrows its original offices in the Canfield Administration Building, and later at the Nebraska Union, and looks for a way to add a residential component to its academic offerings. The Honors Program offices moves to Neihardt Hall, and the Love Wing is designated as Honors Program housing.

The 1992 Honors Program Student Advisory Board is photographed. Student leadership has been integral in building the Honors Program and continues to be essential to its growth today.


The Honors Program textbook scholarship is created. The incoming class is capped at 400 students.


A formal review of the program increases the number of honors hours from 18 to 24. Dr. Karen Lyons is hired as the assistant director and the J.D. Edwards Honors Program, now the Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management, is created.


Study Abroad trip to England, 2002 or 2003

Student experiences, such as this study abroad trip to England, provides invaluable opportunities. This trip is one of many that have happened because of the Honors Program.


Dr. James Partridge joins the Honors Program as assistant director and liaison with the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources.


Dr. Ann Koopmann is hired to be the Honors Program’s first primary academic advisor and director of student services.


Dr. Madhavan Soundararajan joins the Honors Program faculty and becomes assistant director and liaison with the College of Agricultural Science and Natural Resources upon Dr. Partridge’s retirement in 2009.


The incoming class is capped at 500 students.


Honors Program administrators

Dr. Laura Damuth joins the Honors Program as associate director.


Dr. Karen Lyons retires, and Tamy Burnett is hired as assistant director for academic enhancement.


Dr. Patrice Berger

With 550 students, the largest and most diverse incoming class in the history of the program matriculate. The Honors Program celebrates 30 years and the retirement of Dr. Berger. The UNL Honors Program Student Experience Fund is created and is renamed the Dr. Patrice Berger Student Experience Fund in honor of Dr. Berger’s service to the university and the Nebraska Honors Program.