MorganBreannaBy Morgan Willer and Breanna Balleby

Did you know that your degree can consist of more than just your major? Did you know that here at OSU, you can major in a discipline you’re passionate about and enhance your overall degree through the University Honors College, the International Degree Program, and/or the Education Double Degree Program? My fellow College of Liberal Arts Ambassador, Morgan, and I would like to share what these programs are and how we are involved with them!

To start off, the University Honors College (UHC) is a great opportunity for students who are looking to enrich their degree as well as their college experience. Students in the UHC work towards their Honors Baccalaureate, meaning they graduate with an Honors version of their degree, by working on 15-30 Honors credits and eventually completing their Honors thesis. All UHC students are able to take small (capped anywhere from 12-24 students!) Honors classes, partake in the many UHC events and activities such as the annual Fall BBQ and faculty-led book clubs held over Winter and Spring breaks, meet with their Honors advisor in addition to their major advisor, be a part of the University Honors College Student Association that plans everything from social events to service projects, print for free in the student study lounges, and so much more! I love being a part of this smaller, academically-minded, and welcoming community within OSU!

If Honors sounds intriguing to you, be sure to check out more at the UHC website and if you think it would be a good fit and are eligible to apply, then I encourage you to do so. The Honors College accepts applications on a yearly basis for all students so make sure you are aware of the dates to apply! For more information on the UHC, stop by the office in Strand Agricultural Hall 229. In addition to being a CLA Ambassador, I am also a UHC Ambassador, so feel free to contact me or any of my UHC Ambassador peers with any questions you may have for a current student!

Additionally, we have a very unique program here at OSU — the International Degree Program! This program allows students to major in their discipline of choice as well as International Studies. Something that is important to note is that the International Degree, and the International Studies major, must be connected to your primary major. So for example, I am majoring in English, and I am also majoring International Studies (as well as minoring in French). In other words, by attaching the International Studies major to your primary major, you are working to internationalize your degree. Students in this program work towards the International Degree by studying abroad for at least 10 weeks, gaining fourth-year proficiency in a foreign language, taking additional culture classes, and completing a thesis.

The International Degree Program is by admission as well, so I encourage you to look into this program if you are interested in becoming more internationally competent and traveling abroad! For me, the International Degree is the perfect way to add that additional dimension to my degree and has helped me to experience so much more than I might have without it (like studying abroad in France in Summer of 2013, being able to communicate in French, and realizing the importance of a global perspective)! Check out the International Degree and Education Abroad office located in University Plaza (1600 SW Western Blvd) if you’re interested in learning more.

I’d also like to mention that Honors and the International Degree work rather well together. The UHC is highly supportive of experiential learning (like research, internships, and study abroad). On top of that, both programs require a thesis project, and no, as a student in both of these degree programs, I don’t need to complete two theses. Instead, I can work on one thesis that encompasses the requirements of both programs! Kind of cool, right?

Let me remind you that if you’re looking for a student perspective, I am happy to answer questions about the University Honors College and the International Degree! Feel free to contact me via email at ballebyb@onid.orst.edu. For now, Morgan has some expertise to share about the Education Double Degree:

Do you have a passion for lifelong learning? How about a gift for motivating others? Do you enjoy working with people of all ages? If you’re nodding in agreement I want to know you if you’ve ever considered teaching.

Being an educator is one of the most difficult, but one of the most rewarding careers out there. It takes passion and drive to encourage passion and drive within your students. But if you can keep up with your students and inspire them to grow, then you will have a rewarding career ahead of you.

Here at OSU we have the Education Double Degree which gives you the opportunity to combine your major with a degree in Education. For example, I’m a History major and will be graduating with a History degree, but I will be graduating with a complementary degree in Education. Your first degree gives you knowledge in a content area, and your second degree in Education will give you methods and strategies for teaching your content. In addition to the two degrees you will earn a state of Oregon teaching license. Possible endorsements include Social Studies, Language Arts, Spanish, French, German, Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Integrated Science, Basic Math, Advanced Math, Health, and Family and Consumer Sciences. Those are a lot of possibilities for you to choose from!

If you’re unsure about Education as a major you should visit the advising office in Furman Hall 104 and talk to the friendly ladies operating the front desk. They would love to talk to you about all the opportunities open to you. Another option would be to take an entry level TCE class, like TCE 219 Civil Rights and Multicultural Issues in Education. It’s a long title, but an interesting and potentially perspective changing class. If you’d like to know more about my personal experiences with the program you can contact me as well at my OSU email willerm@onid.orst.edu.

 

 

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