History of Honors College

The creation of the Honors College in 2013 was the culmination of a long history of Honors curriculum at APU, and furthers the vision first begun by the Honors Program in 1992 under the leadership of Carole Lambert, Ph.D. An article from The Clause (APU's student newspaper) described the program as designed to “challenge students—not with more work but with hard questions, and dialogue that would help answer those hard questions.” Though the design of the program has changed throughout the years, the commitment to challenge students academically has remained the same.

Under the leadership of Mel Shoemaker, Ph.D., from 1995–2005, and Vicky Bowden, Ph.D., from 2005–12, the Honors Program grew and developed into a mainstay of the university’s opportunities for its gifted students. The introduction of the Oxford Program in 2001 and the High Sierra Semester in 2006 presented students with opportunities to take Honors courses abroad. Additionally, the number of faculty scholars grew and more students were recruited for the program as the curriculum expanded to include more offerings and Honors Colloquia courses.

In 2012, President Jon Wallace, DBA, Provost Mark Stanton, Ph.D., and the Board of Trustees met to discuss the creation of a new Honors College to meet the growing need of the university’s academically excelling students. These conversations and the work of invested stakeholders led to the establishment of the Honors College in 2013, and David Weeks, Ph.D., was named as dean.

Today, the Honors College represents a university-wide effort to strive for the highest standard of academic excellence as we prepare disciples and scholars to make a difference in the world.