The Honors College

Oak View Hall, Room 210
509 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester , MI 48309-4452
(location map)
(248) 370-4450
Fax: (248) 370-4479

Faculty and Staff

The Honors College dean and course committee selects from the full range of Oakland’s faculty, which means you can access the expertise of an entire comprehensive doctoral/research university. Our classes are small, personal and focused on success. You will have Honors College friends and colleagues in every major, every department, and in every discipline. As your faculty, staff and advisers, we support personal excellence.

Administration & staff
Name and positionContact Information
Headshot of Graeme HarperDr. Graeme Harper, Dean

About Dean Harper

(248) 370-4450

Headshot of Anne JacksonAnne Jackson, Assistant Dean


Photo of Sheri RourkeSheri Rourke, Executive Secretary

(248) 370-4443

Headshot of Karen ConnKaren Conn, Administrative Assistant

(248) 370-4419

A headshot of Jennifer BuckJennifer Buck, Office Assistant (Main Office)

(248) 370-4450

Headshot of Susan BeckwithSusan Lynne Beckwith, Faculty
Headshot of Jenna PrzeslawskiJenna Przeslawski, Academic Advisor

A headshot of Alanna CourtrightAlanna Courtright, Graduate Assistant

Headshot of Elizabeth Chlebek

Elizabeth Chlebek, Advising Graduate Assistant
A headshot of Stacia James

Stacia James, Student Office Worker

(248) 370-4450

HC Council
The Honors College Council is the governing body of The Honors College and is made up of a dedicated and diverse group of Oakland faculty as well as select student research interns. Chosen faculty members are generally asked to serve a three-year term on the council while new student members are selected annually.

The council meets every other month for updates on Honors College events and programs, to approve senior thesis proposals and conduct Honors College business.

Council Faculty Members
Amy Banes-BerceliDepartment of Biological Sciences
Assistant Professor
Eddie ChengDepartment of Mathematics and Statistics
Distinguished Professor
Matthew FailsDepartment of Political Science
Associate Professor, Political Science
Darrin HannaDepartment of Engineering & Computer Science
Associate Professor of Engineering, Engineering & Computer Science
David KidgerDepartment of Music
Associate Professor of Musicology
Ji-Eun LeeSchool of Education and Human Services
Associate Professor, Teacher Development and Educational Studies
Sanela MarticDepartment of Chemistry
Assistant Professor, Chemistry
Fritz McDonaldDepartment of Philosophy
Associate Professor, Philosophy
Thomas RaffelDepartment of Biological Sciences
Assistant Professor, Biological Studies
Brad RothDepartment of Physics
Professor, Physics
Kathleen SpencerSchool of Nursing
Assistant Professor, Nursing
Christopher WilsonSchool of Health Sciences
Assistant Professor, Physical Therarpy
Susan WoodDepartment of Art and Art History
Professor, Art History
Virgil Zeigler-HillDepartment of Psychology
Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Training
Faculty Course Proposals


The Honors College invites proposals for wonderful, innovative, engaging courses to be taught in the Summer 2024Fall 2024 and Winter 2025 semesters. Let your imaginations run wild!

In this instance, we seek courses in each general education category. 

Prior to the submission of a Course Proposal, The Faculty Teaching Agreement (eform) must be completed by the Faculty and then routed to their Department Chair who then routes to their Department Dean, who then routes to *This eform is in the Banner forms menu: 

Once Faculty has been cleared to teach for The Honors College - they then complete The Course Proposal (google form-links below) *Before completing, see "Course Development & Proposal Rubric" below.

Proposal Deadlines: 

October 17th - Summer 2024 Courses: SUMMER Course Proposal Form

November 17th - Fall 2024 and Winter 2025 Courses: FALL/WINTER Course Proposal Form

The Honors College

Course Development – Rubric for Course Proposals

Course Description
A short outline of the course, including its purpose and why students will enjoy it.  If the course includes any (a) research component and/or (b) service component that would be a great thing to include in the description. If the course has one (or a small number of primary texts) these could be included in the course description. One tip is to have fun with the title, in the way students will have fun with the class ;-) and include any innovations, unique approaches to be taken, and any (short) background to the course that gives the proposal context. Maximum 250 words.

Aims and Objectives
Include a short outline of the Aims (why the course is being proposed: i.e., the overall goals of the course) and the Objectives (how the course will reach those goals: the "how it is going to happen"; description of the course). The Aims and Objectives section simply give the Course Selection Committee a chance to see the distinctiveness of the course. 200 words is ample.

Learning Outcomes
What is the knowledge students will gain from the course? This usually is easiest for folks on the Committee to grasp if there is a main or overarching learning aim, that is stated, and then any other aims are related to it, or embedded in it. 100 words is ample.
Bibliography / Other Sources
A brief list of some of the books or other materials that are likely to be used during the course. This does not have to be a complete list at the proposal stage - merely indicative. 2-5 items would be typical.

General Education Categories
To make it less burdensome for those proposing courses to decide on a General Education category for their course, from 2023 The Honors College Course Selection Committee will use proposal descriptions and the content of proposals to confirm a Gen
Ed category. On occasion, a course may be selected to be offered in more than one category. For descriptive purposes, The Honors College uses the published OU's General Education categories, and other Gen Ed course attributes widely available on OU's website and in the Course Catalog under General Education Requirements. 

Honors Institute
Since its foundation Oakland University has had a relationship with honors education.

In the late 1950s when the university was being established, and its first curriculum was being created, a group of honors college students from the nation's first honors college - The Honors College Group, as it was called - was asked by the administration to make their recommendations on the Oakland University curriculum and to express their thoughts on how best to support high-performing students. The then Oakland Chancellor Durward "Woody" Varner later wrote to each of the group to thank them for their contribution to the character and direction of Oakland University.

As those early Oakland administrators pointed out, supporting educational excellence is not about elitism, not about rewarding those who hold a privileged position. Rather, it is about supporting those who strive to be the best they can be, who follow their aspirations with determination and with application.

"Honors education", Grey C. Austin points out in a book chapter entitled "Orientation to Honors Education", refers to "the total means by which a college or university seeks to meet the educational needs of its ablest and most highly motivated students" (Austin: 5).

AUSTIN, GREY C. 1986. "Orientation to Honors Education." In Fostering Academic Excellence Through Honors Programs, ed. Kenneth E. Eble. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Faculty and Staff Recognition

Many faculty at Oakland University have supported honors education in many ways and over many years.

In recognition of faculty who have made regular and important contributions to honors education, Oakland University has created the Honors Institute. The Institute celebrates those faculty who have made a sustained and lasting contribution to honors education. New members are celebrated each year.

Christopher Apap
Colleen Arnett
Nicole Asmussen
Claude Ballairgeon
Amy Banes-Berceli
Maria Beam
Susan Beckwith
Benjamin Bennett-Carpenter
Peter Bertocci
Dikka Berven
Courtney Brannon Donoghue
Gottfried Brieger
Maria Bryant
Doug Carr
Graham Cassano
Rebecca Cheezum
Eddie Cheng
Dan Clark
Chris Clason
Natalie Cole
Karen Conn
Brian Connery
Brian Dean
Thomas Discenna
Mark Doman
Ada Chun Dong
Bill Edwards
Randall Engle
Alan Epstein
Susan E. Evans
Susan J.Evans
Joanne Lipson Freed
David Garfinkle
Thomas Giberson
Gregory Giberson
Holly Gilbert
Stacey Hahn
Greg Hickman
Alice Horning
Jeff Insko
Jennifer Janes
Amy Johnson
Angela Kaiser
David Kidger
Chris Kobus
Paul Kubicek
Ji-Eun Lee
Todd Leibert
Yan Li
Larry Lilliston
Barbara Mabee
Sarah Maher
Kieran Mathieson
Linda McCloskey
Fritz McDonald
Erin Meyers
Jean Ann Miller
Pamela Mitzelfeld
Seigo Nakao
James Naus
Mark Navin
Barbara Oakley
Maria Paino
Jessica Payette
Sandra Pelfrey
Aldona Pobustky
Sandy Powell
Ingrid Rieger
Helena Riha
Brad Roth
Darrell Schmidt
Linda Schweitzer
Gary Shepherd
D. Shepherd
B. Shepherd
Karen Sheridan
Liz Shesko
Cynthia Sifonis
Craig Smith
Richard Stamps
Sally Tardella
David Tindall
Terri Towner
Stephanie Vallie
Robert Van Til
Donna Voronovich
Mary Wermuth
Susan Wood
Stephen Wright
Janusz Wrobel
Virgil Ziegler-Hill