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Saturday, October 1, 2022

Academics & Research

Honors College launches new transcript designation


honors college

The Honors College launched a new transcript designation that those not in the college can pursue. | Michael Slaten/The Cougar

The Honors College launched a new “Honors in Co-Curricular Engagement” transcript designation for any UH student who is substantially involved in learning outside of the classroom.

Whether in the Honors College or not, students can now collect points from co-curricular activities like research, internships, learning away and abroad, service learning and leadership experiences. After documenting these activities and completing an ePortfolio reflection, they will have “Honors in Co-Curricular Engagement” printed on their transcripts.

“Some of your most enriching experiences at (UH) may take place outside of the classroom and beyond your formal academic curriculum,” program staff wrote on the HCCE webpage. “Formally pursuing the HCCE designation will help you as a student recognize the learning and growth happening outside of the classroom and connect it to the education and training you are receiving in the classroom.”

Each activity is worth around two or three points, with some programs like learning abroad and non-structured undergraduate research varying based on the program and degree of involvement.

The mandatory ePortfolio reflection or an approved substitute is worth one point. This tool is an online biography that students can build to share experiences and accomplishments throughout college with prospective employers and graduate or professional schools.

Students must receive 12 points total across at least two of the three categories- Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities, Community, Civic and Global Activities as well as Professional, Scholarship and Leadership Activities, to receive the transcript designation.

Experiences don’t need to be from formal UH programs, but external ones need to receive approval before counting towards HCCE.

Although the designation officially launched in Fall 2021, it is slowly gaining more attention this semester.

Director of Co-Curricular Honors Rita Sirrieh will be hosting an information session on HCCE on Feb. 9 and a Co-Curricular Programs Fair on Mar. 4, both in the M.D. Anderson Libarary’s Rockwell Pavilion.

“We hope in the future to also offer a co-curricular transcript that will list the experiences that students participated in,” said Sirrieh. “It seems similar to a resume, but it is a way for students to have a verified record of their involvement in various experiential learning programs.”

Sirrieh hopes that through these initiatives, students will have more incentive to take advantage of the experiential learning programs available at UH. She believes the ePortfolio will help since it’s a built-in mechanism for students to think about what they learned and about how they learned it.

“These experiences enrich their education, help them hone different skills, and connect them to peers and mentors,” Sirrieh said. “(The ePortfolio) helps students prepare for interviews and teaches them how to talk about what they did, why they chose to pursue it, and what they got out of it.”

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