The Honors Program at the University of Mary Washington asks much from its participants. But the high-achieving, intellectually curious students admitted into the selective program say everything they do as Honors Scholars rewards their efforts many times over.

That was the overwhelming message from eight program alumni and several current participants as the UMW Honors Program celebrated its 10th anniversary Saturday, March 25, with a panel discussion, video and reception at Seacobeck Hall.

Conceived as a way to recruit top achievers out of high school – and keep them engaged and enthusiastic during their full four years at Mary Washington – the Honors Program began in the 2012-13 academic year with a goal of admitting 50 qualified students. Seventy-five signed up, recalled Professor of Chemistry and Honors Program Director Kelli Slunt, and the Honors Program has exceeded expectations ever since.

“The program is thriving, and I’m just so thrilled with all the changes that have happened in the past 10 years,” Slunt told the audience gathered in Seacobeck’s Weatherly Wing. Key to that success, she said, has been the addition of Professor of English Mara Scanlon as associate director and Kasey Morello as program coordinator. Scanlon coined the program’s motto, “Be More,” and it couldn’t be more apt. Read more.