You probably haven’t considered the University of Kentucky, and especially if you have a high-performing, deep-thinking intellectual. But here’s why you should. Founded in 2018, the Lewis Honors College is a community of high-quality students who are ‘committed to engaging in and developing a new world around them,’ and is under the steady guidance of Dean Christian Brady, a Cornell alumnus who formerly ran the Penn State Schreyer Honors College.
Aside from the standard honors college perks – smaller classes, priority registration and living/learning communities, what do UK Lewis Honors College students receive? This program has a unique commitment to helping students with personal development (in addition to academic and professional growth). Lewis has a Center for Personal Development, in which full-time staff advisors work with students on all aspects of their college experience, including a focus on mental health. Every student gets a peer mentor in addition to a professional staff advisor, and the Honors College brings in speakers weekly. Given the growing mental health crisis we’re seeing on college campuses today, it was refreshing to hear directly from Dean Brady how the new Lewis Honors College is emphasizing the entirety of the student experience.
Of course Lewis students get the benefit of the larger UK community as well – and it’s one of only 8 universities in the country with all undergraduate and grad programs on one (large!) campus. There’s also the fabulous UK Wildcat spirit – these folks love their basketball team and you’ll see blue all over campus. Ninety percent of Honors students live on campus, and about a quarter of them join Greek organizations. Jewish students benefit from a new full-time director of Jewish Life on campus. Yes, there are Jews here!
Lexington is home to a number of major corporations, including Toyota, Hitachi, Lexmark, and lots of ancillary businesses to support these giants. So students have great internship opportunities, and Lexington is a nice mid-sized town.
Evelyn, Debbie, Lesa and Diane visited the UK Lewis Honors College in fall, 2019. You can scroll through all of the photos from their visit below.