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Posted on June 7th in REACH Blog

Meet the Speakers for Honors Institute 2021

Honors Institute June 23-25

Each year, Honors Institute brings students and advisors together for a unique opportunity to get to know our honors topic through learning experiences that push boundaries, offer new perspectives, and challenge participants’ ways of thinking. The 2021 Virtual Honors Institute. June 23-25, will do just that! Here’s a sneak peek at what to expect from this year’s speakers.

Dr. John Hibbing

Dr. John Hibbing

The event will kick off with a look at how our biology guides our views and understanding of the world. In the first session, PTK President and CEO Dr. Lynn Tincher-Ladner will sit down for an engaging conversation with Dr. John Hibbing. An author and political science professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Hibbing focuses his research on the relationship of biological characteristics to political orientation and behavior. He co-authored the book Predisposed: Liberals, Conservatives, and the Biology of Political Differences. The book and this session will change the way you think about politics and partisan conflict.

In Session 2, members of the Honors Program Council will guide participants on translating their exploration of the Honors Study Topic into their chapter’s Honors in Action Project by answering, “What is Honors In Action (HIA) and how does it relate to Phi Theta Kappa?” These advisors, headquarters staff, and consultants represent a variety of academic disciplines with each contributing their expertise to the creation of PTK’s biennial Honors Study Topic. Who better to learn about Honors in Action from?

Dr. Jaime Napier

Dr. Jaime Napier

For Session 3, the focus will shift to the influence of social systems on one’s belief system and vice versa. Dr. Jaime Napier, Associate Professor of Psychology at New York University Abu Dhabi, will join Dr. Johanna Williams, PTK’s Associate Vice President of STEM and Workforce Programs, for a conversation exploring how social systems influence individual belief systems and the psychological and social consequences of certain belief systems.

Dr. Nell Irvin Painter

Dr. Nell Irvin Painter

Racial and gender identity will be topics for exploration during Session 4 featuring Dr. Nell Irvin Painter, a retired Princeton University history professor and award-winning scholar, writer, and artist. Painter is the author of seven books, including Sojourner Truth: A Life, A Symbol, and countless articles relating to the history of the American South. She will be joined by Susan Edwards, PTK’s Associate Vice President of Honors Programming and Undergraduate Research, for a thought-provoking conversation on these timely topics.

Dr. Enric Sala

Dr. Enric Sala

In our final session, we’ll turn toward the environment with conservationist Dr. Enric Sala. As a university professor, Sala saw himself writing the obituary of ocean life – so he quit academia to become a full-time conservationist as a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence. He founded and leads Pristine Seas, a project that combines exploration, research, and media to inspire country leaders to protect the last wild places in the ocean.

This is only the beginning of what Honors Institute 2021 offers. Following each speaker session, participants will attend small-group seminar meetings that provide a unique environment for exchange of ideas and continued exploration of ideas introduced in the speaker sessions. Learn more.