Belhaven University Students Excel at Mississippi Honors Conference

March 12, 2024 (Starkville, Miss.) - Students from Belhaven University's Honors Program recently showcased their academic prowess at the Mississippi Honors Conference, held at Mississippi State University. Two of the five participating Belhaven students secured third place in their respective categories.

The Mississippi Honors Conference is a prestigious statewide competition where students from various honors programs across Mississippi present their research projects and are evaluated based on the quality of their work and their presentation skills.

Belhaven University's participants, Alex Tupper and Zach Mayberry, presented their creative works, delving into the realms of dramaturgy and music composition. Additionally, William Devenish contributed his insights into the complexities of biblical interpretation.

Aspen Powell, a sports medicine and exercise science major, garnered third place in the Social Sciences Oral Presentation category with her research on "The Impact of Disability on Parental Burnout." Emma Lapeyre, a theatre major, secured third place in Humanities Oral Presentation for her exploration of "Eowyn’s Healing Journey: The Strength of Virtue as Demonstrated in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings."

“The Mississippi Honors Conference allows students to more fully hone their research, writing, and oral presentation skills,” said Dr. Jonathan Koefoed, Belhaven’s Honors Program Director and Associate Professor of History. “Important growth occurs when students, especially honors students, learn how to think about a problem or a text in an original way. By competing with other students and having their conclusions judged by professors from around the state, our honors students gain confidence in their own intellectual abilities and their ability to communicate their ideas among peers in other state honors programs.”

Hosted by Mississippi State University, the event witnessed participation from universities such as the University of Mississippi, the University of Southern Mississippi, and several private institutions and community colleges. Participation in events like the Mississippi Honors Conference is instrumental in developing students' research, writing, and presentation skills. It offers them a platform to engage with peers from diverse backgrounds and disciplines, fostering intellectual growth and confidence in their abilities.

Belhaven University's Honors Program aims to provide academically driven students with opportunities to enrich their education both intellectually and spiritually. Through specialized seminar courses, research projects, and community-building activities, the program nurtures a supportive environment where students can explore significant questions and deepen their understanding of various subjects. For students seeking a vibrant academic community and opportunities for personal and intellectual growth, Belhaven University's Honors Program offers an enriching experience that goes beyond the conventional classroom setting.