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Spring 2022 Honors Symposium: Home

Spring2022 Honors Symposium:Home

The Honors College Symposium

The UMass Lowell Honors College Symposium is a non-credit, non-graded, optional way for Honors College students to satisfy H4, H5 or H6 honors course requirements. The symposium consists of three units throughout the semester, one per month. Each unit requires approximately 25 hours of engagement. You can start today if you wish. The Honors College Symposium is classified as an Honors Interactive Experience and, as such, includes a reading, writing, and speaking component.

Principal Features:

  • Attend all three Friday discussion sessions. Time 3:00-5:00. Two hours in length. On Feb. 25th, Mar. 25th, and Apr. 22nd in O'Leary Library 300 3rd floor.  (Will move to virtually if need be)
  • Read
  • Write
  • Speak


  • Stephanie Ortiz (Feb 25th): Ortiz will provide an overview of how sociologists explain power and privilege, then use digital inequalities as a case study to show power dynamics operate online. 
  • Sue Kim and Richard Howe (March 25th)If you live in Lowell, the city councilors have a greater impact on your day-to-day life than does the President of the United States. Following local politics not only helps hold elected officials accountable, it also helps place national political conflicts in a broader context. For more than 50 years, politics in Lowell has been characterized by a struggle between progressives and conservatives. In that, it mirrors the rest of the country.  
  • Larissa Gaias (April 22nd): Larissa Gaias will discuss how systems of power within society can contribute to the formation of biases within individuals, including unconscious biases we may be unaware that we hold. Students will learn how these biases can impact our decisions and interactions with others. Students will also learn four strategies for reducing bias in their everyday lives. 

*see below for more details   

Questions or to sign up contact:

Responsibilities of the Honors Students

Each student must:
(1) Sign up for the Symposium by completing and submitting the Honors Interactive Experience Application * Only fill out the first page and list Erin Maitland as the Mentor.  
(2) Read articles from all 3 speakers (See article links below). We want the speaker sessions to be a discussion, so having this background knowledge will help you be able to participate in the discussion and gain a better understanding of the topic.  
(3) Attend, be on time, be fully prepared, and be fully engaged in all three symposium discussion sessions.
(4) Write and record a  final Radio Commentary.  Please create an MP3 file, Title your commentary (a title that gets at what your main argument is), and send it to  The Radio Commentary assignment is due no later than May 8th.  

The Radio Commentary is an opportunity for you to share what you thought and make an argument about one (or more) of the topics discussed during the Symposium. Take a look at these Radio Commentary Guidelines. Based on everything you have read and heard, what is your most important takeaway? You heard the speakers make their arguments, now it is your turn to make yours. Think about how you might persuade others--make your case. This is your time to reflect on the last 3 months and talk about it.

*The Radio Commentary is due by the last day of the semester.  Please submit it to 

***PLEASE name the file: FIRSTname_LASTname_SymposiumSemesteryear (Example: Sally_Smith_SymposiumSpring22).


*This is not a graded course.  You will receive a Satisfactory(S) or Unsatisfactory (U) on your transcript.   

Note: Failure to fulfill all above requirements in a timely manner will result in the student receiving an Unsatisfactory grade for the Symposium and thereby not receiving credit for the H4, H5, or H6 honors requirement.


If you have any questions or concerns please email