Sink or Swim?

by Heidi Butler
May 01, 2013

Several years ago Ruby Johnson stood at the podium at Northampton Community College (NCC) to deliver a presentation based on work she did in one of her honors courses.  She exceled in her studies at Northampton, and she continues to excel.  This spring she will complete a master's degree in history at Villanova University.  She will continue her education at George Washington University where she has been accepted into a doctoral program.Cesaria Adote

On April 30 members of the latest "crop" of NCC honors students stood where Ruby stood four years ago- speaking  about research they have done in honors courses in English, literature, philosophy, psychology and political science to an audience of their fellow students, NCC faculty, and guests from other colleges and universities.

"Today's presentations represent some of the finest work our students have done this year, during both the fall and spring semesters, and on both the Main and Monroe campuses," Cara McClintock-Walsh, the coordinator of the honors program.

"We are very proud of these students and eager to see what they will do next,"  McClintock-Walsh told the crowd, after listing the accomplishments of earlier graduates of the program like Ruby Johnson.

In describing NCC's honors students, the English professor quoted  a poem in which Nobel Prize winner Seamus Heaney wrote:  "Keep at a tangent./When they make the circle wide, it's time to swim/out on your own and fill the element/with signatures on your own frequency,/echo soundings, searches, probes, allurements,/ever-gleams in the dark of the whole sea." 

"The students you see here today do just that," McClintock-Walsh said.,

The presenters at this year's Honors Conference, their topics and their professors were:

The presenters, their topics and their professors are:

Cesaria Adote
"Shutter Island:  A Case Study on Dissociative Identity Disorder"
Introduction to Psychology
Professor Gina Turner

Joseph Baldamente and Sarah Reichard
Major Authors in Irish Literature:  W.B. Yeats and Emma Donoghue
Irish Literature
Professor Cara McClintock-Walsh

Stacy Beaty and Rosa Javier
"The  Upanishads" and Meditation
Asian Philosophy
Professor Ken Burak

Daniel Kulesa
Creative Approaches to Literature and Composition:  "Watch Over 'Em"
English II
Professor Precie Schroyer

Sonia Kunz
Perspectives on Social Justice:  "Sexual Slavery ExposedSonia Kunz"
Introduction to Political Science
Professor Vasiliki Anastasakos

Amanda Lott, Aaron Rosengarten and Charles Wallace
"The Fisherman and the Train," "The Fictional Reality of India's Partition," and "The Gibberish of Madness"
English II
Professor Mary Mathis



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