Incoming Honors College freshmen have a special opportunity to participate in one of four Honors service-learning program before formal classes begin in the Fall. Participants arrive on campus before their peers and devote the week before the fall semester begins to service projects in west Alabama. Each program provides a unique experience for our students. Current Honors College students serve as student leaders and directors, and staff members serve as advisors. Freshmen receive one hour of pass/fail UH 103 credit for the fall semester

Alabama Action is a student-created service-learning opportunity for approximately 150 Honors College freshmen that responds to the needs of the community by providing hands-on projects and issue-relevant education. Service projects, such as mural painting, landscaping, building and other projects, take place at local underserved schools. Guest lecturers meet with students on campus to discuss issues such as systemic poverty, the meaning of civic engagement, and policy related issues. Through this experience, students make connections with other incoming students, student leaders, and Honors College faculty and staff.

Outdoor Action is an exciting for 80 incoming freshmen, in which they enjoy outdoor activities such as canoeing and river seining and then work together on a service project with local environmental groups to improve outdoor infrastructure.

Blackbelt Action provides approximately 30 incoming freshmen with a focused, transformative experience in Alabama’s Black Belt region. Originally named for its fertile soil, the Balck Belt is a string of 19 counties that stretch across the heart of Alabama. Students will work to make a positive impact in Marion, AL, and will explore the elements of “community” and the implications of systemic poverty through discussion with local community leaders, group reflection, and selected readings.

Health Action is a program for 25 incoming freshmen that focuses on health disparities in America. Students collaborate with local agencies to help alleviate health issues in the community and guest speaker discuss poverty and health care disparities.

Honors Action will take place August 13-18, 2017. To be eligible for any program, one must be an incoming freshman who has been admitted to the Honors College and pay the approximately $200 deposit. More information, and the application, will be available in the spring.

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