Honors Students Excel: Finish in Three Years

July 26, 2013

An impressive group of four young women graduated this May in the inaugural class of MNU’s honors program. The graduates completed bachelor’s degrees in just three years with two earning double majors while one was dual enrolled in the pharmacy program at the University of Missouri at Kansas City during her senior year.

Dr. Mark Hayse, professor of Christian education and honors program director says the students each completed 18 credit hours of honors coursework and 180 hours of community service-leadership as part of the requirements to earn an honors certificate upon graduation.

The students’ interests were varied. Erin Ashley focused her studies on a double major in psychology and sociology. English major Amanda Neufeld was also editor of the university’s Trailblazer newspaper. Rebekah Wilkins, chemistry and forensic chemistry major , interned as an analyst at the Johnson County crime lab while twin sister Christina Wilkins, a biology major, served as freshman class chaplain and a Trailblazer writer.

Hayse says the honors program aims to enrich gifted students with opportunities to study subjects they would not otherwise study. Students often study abroad, complete internships and practicums and enjoy interacting with honors students from other universities through MNU’s membership in The National Collegiate Honors Council.

Honors Program Grads 2013 Web2Dr. Mark Hayse, honors program director, (middle) with the inaugural class of honors graduates May 2013. Left to right: Erin Ashley – psychology and sociology, Christina Wilkins – biology, Amanda Neufeld – English, Rebekah Wilkins – chemistry, forensic chemistry.

Students may apply for acceptance if they have at least a 3.5 GPA on a 4.0 scale and at least a cumulative 28 on the ACT. 

“I love the curious minds and tender hearts that are represented in our honors program,” Hayse says.  “Those students want to integrate faith and learning. They have come to MNU already along the way in that regard. We function as a kind of midwife—assisting in the divine work of transformation that is already occurring in their lives.”