“The changing of hats is going to take some getting used to,” Saavedra said, “but I’m very excited about being giving the chance to serve the university in this academic program.”
The Honors Studies Program is an academic enrichment program that offers special honors classes at the freshman and sophomore level, independent study at the upper level, and events such as guest speakers, development seminars, and educational travel as a basic curriculum.
Saavedra, who serves on the board of the McAllen Independent School District, earned a PhD from the University of Kansas after receiving her master’s and bachelor’s degrees from The University of Texas-Pan American, where she has taught for five years.
“I was never in the honors program, but I was always proud of the education I received here,” Saavedra said. “We need to promote a program such as this one for the strong academic students here in the Rio Grande Valley.”
“I’ll be spending the first semester gathering information on how other honor programs around the nation are run,” Saavedra said. “I’m planning on spending time meeting with people on campus and finding out what hopes they have for our program so we can assure a high quality honors program with an expanded scope.”
“We are all excited about the selection of Dr. Saavedra,” said Dr. James Lamare, dean of the College of Social Behavioral Sciences, in which the Honors Studies Program is based. “We think she will be moving the program in a dynamic direction and will be making the program very visible on campus.”