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Welcome to the Honors Program at the State University of New York at
New Paltz

About the Program

The mission of the SUNY New Paltz Honors Program is to provide an enhanced intellectual experience in a climate conducive to interaction among highly motivated students and faculty.  This experience will seek to develop and intensify skills from a conceptual point of view in a diverse multidisciplinary analytical environment that nurtures independent thinking, creativity, respect and social responsibility.

The Honors Program consists of around 180 students. Once admitted to the program, students take special Honors seminars, which are interdisciplinary and small in size (usually around 15 students). Unlike traditional lecture courses, Honors seminars emphasize dialogue and non-lecture based learning; students are expected to come to class with something to say and to actively participate in debate and discussion.

picture of dr. patricia sullivanDr. Patricia Sullivan, Director

Office:  CH-H 111
Phone:  845-257-3456
Office Hours:
Tuesday & Thursday from 4:00-5:00
Thursday from 10:00-11:30
Wednesday from 3:00-5:00
Friday from 11:00-12:00

Dr. Pat Sullivan is the director of the Honors Program at SUNY New Paltz and professor in the Department of Digital Media & Journalism. She served as department chair for seven years. She specializes in the study of rhetoric or public communication and has published criticism on a variety of texts (e.g., political speeches, U.S. Supreme Court decisions, autobiographies, media coverage). Current research interests focus on gender, race, and class issues in political communication; political apologies; and ethics and political communication. She is co-author of From the Margins to the Center: Contemporary Women and Political Communication and co-editor of Political Rhetoric, Power, and Renaissance Women and New Approaches to Rhetoric. Her articles have appeared in journals such as Quarterly Journal of Speech, Communication Quarterly, Western Journal of Communication, and Women and Politics. For the Honors Program, she teaches seminars on "The Individual and Society" and "Debates in U.S. History." As a member of the Department of Digital Media & Journalism, she teaches "Introduction to Media Criticism" and "Aesthetics and Criticism of Television". She received her B.A. in English and communication from Marquette University and her Ph.D. in communication (rhetorical studies) from the University of Iowa.

Click here to view our recent events.

Fall 2014 Events & Trips

Introductory Events

Welcome Back Picture2-3 p.m. Aug. 22: Honors Program Orientation





Welcome Back Picture6 p.m. Aug. 26, 2014: Greet & Eat
Come make some friends and introduce yourself by telling us something about yourself through music, reciting a play you were in, an object that holds sentimental value, etc.




Clearwater PictureSept. 7, 2014: Clearwater Sailing Trip



Mohonk Picture 

Oct. 5, 2014: Mohonk Preserve Hike




Storm King image


Oct. 19, 2014: Storm King Art Center




Upcoming Events


Slant of Light Image 

Slant of Light Book One Year Anniversary Celebration. 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 18 in the Honors Center.

 Digital Humanities Poster

"Digital Humanities in English Departments:  Beyond the Boundary of the Book", a presentation by Professor Annie Swafford, Assistant Professor of English. 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 30, in the Honors Center.

english flyer New Voices, New Visions Student Reading.  3 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 1 in the Honors Center.
 Columbus Event

"Columbus on Trial." 2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 8 in the Honors Center.

 Art Flyer

Art opening for Honors student, Sana Shepko. 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 9 in the Honors Center.

data journalism flyer

"Doing Data Journalism", a presentation by Greg Munno, Assistant Research Professor at Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC). 9:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 10 in the Honors Center.

english flyer

Join us as Kristopher Jansma, Assistant Professor of English, reads from his award-winning novel, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards. 5 p.m. Monday, Oct. 20 in the Honors Center. 


"It Is Difficult", an artistic practices lecture by internationally acclaimed artist, architect and filmmaker, Alfredo Jaar. 5 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22, in the Lecture Center, Room 100.


"Writing Out Loud" hosted by The Writing Board.  5-7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct.22 in the Honors Center.


 "The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet".  An abridged version of Shakespeare's tragedy created and directed by Honors student, Max Singer as part of his senior thesis. 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28 and Wednesday, Oct. 29 in Parker Theatre.

vargas event flyer

"Making it Medieval:  Looking for Deep History in the Modern Catalan Conscience", a presentation by Professor Michael Vargas, Associate Professor of History and Latin American and Caribbean Studies.  Monday, November 3, 5:00p.m., in the Honors Center.

baba brinkman image

Baba Brinkman the famous "evolutionary rapper" who is well-known around the world for his performance "The Rap Guide to Evolution" among other performances (such as the Canterbury Tales" done rap-style!) will be performing "The Rap Guide to Religion" (his newest-now slated as an off-Broadway show in NYC on our campus 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 4 in LC102.

internship flyer

"The Art of Interning: Student Perspectives", a student perspective internship panel moderated by Dawn McCaw, Assistant Director, Career Resource Center and Pat Sullivan, Director, The Honors Program.  Thursday, November 13, 6:00p.m., in The Honors Center.

roth flier

"Exploring the World of Philip Roth's Nemesis", One Book/One New Paltz event.  Discussion with Cyrus Mulready, Associate Professor of English and graduates from the English Department.  Monday, November 17, 5:00p.m., in The Honors Center.

jonathan van meter

"A Conversation with Jonathan Van Meter", a student workshop with Jonathan Van Meter, magazine writer and contributing editor, Vogue.  Tuesday, November 18, 2:30p.m., in The Honors Center.


"U.S. Foreign Policy in Regard to ISIL/ISIS/IS", a panel discussion presented by The Center for Middle Eastern Dialogue and the Political Science Department.  Thursday, November 20, 7:00p.m., in LC 102.

Digital Humanities Flier

"Born Digital:  From Archives to Maps", a presentation by Professor Annie Swafford, Assistant Professor of English.  Wednesday, December 3, 9:30am, in The Honors Center.


Faculty Excellence Speaker Series

Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs Philip Mauceri cordially invites the campus community to attend the following presentations by recipients of the 2013-2014 Provost awards for excellence.  All presentations will be followed by Q&A and discussion.

Oct. 2, 2014
"A Fundamental Question in Speech Perception:  How Do Listeners Overcome Signal Variability?"
Navin Viswanathan, Assistant Professor, Psychology Department
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Awardee, Outstanding Pre-Tenure Faculty

Dec. 2, 2014
"Wine and Market Research"
Ted Clark, Lecturer
School of Business
Awardee, Excellence in Professional Service

Feb. 2, 2015
"Out of the Ivory Tower & Into the Community:  Putting Research to Work"
Eve Waltermaurer, Associate Professor, CRREO & Sociology Department 
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Awardee, Excellence in Scholarly and Creative Activity

April 14, 2015
"The Thayer Method and Creating Student-Centered Classrooms"
Hamilton Stapell, Associate Professor, History Department
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Awardee, Teaching Excellence



There will be more events added to this list as the semester progresses.