Students honored at luncheon

Donna Maranto and Donna Maranto

The 22nd annual Honors Reception presented by the San Diego Community College District Honors Program and hosted by Chancellor Constance Carroll began at the Prado restaurant in Balboa Park Tuesday, May 4.

Beginning with the welcome address and introductions by Kelly Mayhew, the district Honors Program co-coordinator, each table moved to the buffet, where guests were served salad and baked poultry with sides of pasta and fruit.

President Terrence Burgess, as well as the Board of Trustees of the District was present and spent time greeting staff and students alike.

Carroll spoke first, citing the work of the program on all three campuses, and how helpful it is for students wanting to transfer to four-year colleges.

She especially noted the hard work of the City College student, Naomi Salas-SantaCruz.

SantaCruz began at City College with a GPA of 1.7, while being homeless, and raised her GPA to 3.6. Instead of a speech, she presented a slide show of the activities that she had partaken in for this accomplishment.

In honors courses, topics are explored in depth, with an emphasis on critical thinking, extensive reading and writing and student presentations.

The Honors Program came about because of a districtwide movement for instructional innovation, said Candace Waltz, one of the founders of the program.

The Honors Contract is a distinct element, a pact between student and professor that moves a course beyond traditional class requirements into deeper analysis and communication regarding the course’s subject matter.

The Honors Program liaises with several major four-year universities, including UC Los Angeles, Universty of Southern California, UC Irvine, Occidental College, Pepperdine University, Pomona College, UC Santa Cruz and UC Riverside.

Other speakers included students Donia Ahadian from Mesa and Heather Paulson from Miramar.

As the luncheon moved on to dessert, Mayhew introduced Dr. Esther Kronovet from the San Diego Scholarship Foundation, whom the guests applauded for her input, which has been helpful for so many students.

The program ended at 3 p.m. with the naming of the students who are transfering to universities.