Honors Open Meeting

Honors Open Meeting            On Wednesday, March 10, 2010, the Pforzheimer Honors College held their spring semester Open Meeting in Butcher Suite of Kessel Student Center. 127 Honor students arrived to find a table filled with various ice cream flavors and toppings to make their own sundaes. Once they checked in with Honors Advisor Prof. Chris Walther, the Director of the Honors College, Dr. Janetta Rebold Benton, formally began the event. She invited the event’s speaker, Dr. Ellen Mandel, Professor of Communications, to the stage.
            Dr. Mandel’s speech reiterated the importance and significance of college to the students’ futures and referenced her own life as an example of its many benefits. She holds a doctoral degree in Speech Pathology from Columbia University and currently works as a beloved public speaking professor and the director of Freshman Speech here at Pace.
            During her speech, she fondly remembered one of her first post-graduate jobs--working for the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils hockey teams as a translator for players and their families.  What many students may not have been aware of was Dr. Mandel’s recent work with childhood language development within Westchester County and aiding the linguistic progress of international students.
            Dr. Mandel not only exhibits passion for teaching, but for working to serve others as well. She is the Pace University team captain in the Susan G. Komen
Race for the Cure Against Breast Cancer,a cause and organization that she has supported and worked with for eighteen years. Dr. Mandel encouraged the crowd to become involved with this very worthwhile cause, not only to support those affected, but also to enhance their own understanding of this disease.  Students can become involved with the Susan G. Komen foundation through volunteer work, donations or walking with Dr. Mandel and the Pace team during the foundation’s highly successful walk-a-thon in September. She was very proud to report that Pace was able to donate invaluable proceeds and time to last year’s event and hopes to continue the trend in the fall.
            After Dr. Mandel finished speaking, Dr. Benton returned to the stage. Dr. Benton invited the students to give their honest opinions and feedback about the Honors courses that were offered this semester.  She also discussed potential courses for the fall semester and asked students for their ideas about other courses they would like the Honors College to offer, as well as which professors they would prefer teach them. This portion of the event, which encourages active, student participation, has remained unchanged each semester and generates much of the event’s appeal.
Dr. Benton then discussed future Honors events, including an Honors Karaoke night and more cooking classes. She concluded the meeting by thanking Dr. Mandel and the students for attending yet another successful Honors event.