Endicott Scholars Program Offers a Unique Academic Experience

Giving ambitious students the opportunity to study topics outside of their majors and from a variety of academic perspectives.

Endicott Scholars Colby Yokell and Dean Sara Quay sit at a table Photo by Terry Slater
Est. Read Time

Under the leadership of Dr. Sara Quay, dean of education, the Endicott College Scholars program is an interdisciplinary honors curriculum that gives the College’s most ambitious students the opportunity to study topics in-depth and from a variety of academic ­perspectives.

On April 29 at Misselwood, 45 seniors were honored
at the Endicott Scholars Program Senior Gala,
an annual recognition ceremony.
Students in the program take a sequence of honors courses beginning with a foundational seminar focused on the field of cultural studies. Upper-level seminars are taught by faculty experts from across the College, and the topics and faculty change each semester. During the Fall ʼ19 semester, four upper-level seminars are offered, including The Psychology of Everyday Decisions; American Slavery; Evolution of Religion and Science; and Ideologies of Music, Art, and Literature. Scholars choose seminars that are interesting to them, regardless of their academic major, creating a unique opportunity to engage with students from across the College in an advanced study of the topic.

The learning objectives of the Endicott Scholars program are woven into every course: to develop the habit of intellectual curiosity; identify ways of thinking and knowing within academic and professional disciplines; understand the concepts of “culture” and “theory” from a variety of academic perspectives; comprehend challenging readings in primary and secondary sources; write academic papers that are intellectually sound and stylistically proficient; and adopt leadership roles in and out of class.

"Dean Quay made difficult concepts easy to understand, was always available to provide help, and went above and beyond to see her students succeed."
Colby Yokell '22

We spoke with English major Colby Yokell ’22 about her first year as an Endicott Scholar.

How has being an Endicott Scholar benefited you personally?

The content I learned from my first year as an Endicott Scholar has enabled me to look differently at the world. I have improved my analyzing skills and have become a better writer. I have become more comfortable pushing myself outside of my comfort zone and to be more confident in my own abilities. It even helped give me the courage to become an Orientation Leader. 

Endicott Scholars stats

How has the Endicott Scholar faculty supported you?

A large part of the reason why the program has had such a positive effect on me is because of the professor who taught my first honors seminar, Dean of Education and Director of the Endicott Scholars Program, Dr. Sara Quay. Dean Quay made difficult concepts easy to understand, was always available to provide help, and went above and beyond to see her students succeed. After only being in her class a few months, she was willing to write a letter of recommendation for me, enabling me to become a Writing Center tutor.

Was there a specific assignment that stands out during your first year as an Endicott Scholar?

The ideology paper I wrote in Honors 100 (HON 100) stands out as a memorable project. For this assignment, we had to choose a piece of culture—television show, music video, or movie—and analyze it from the point of view of gender ideology, political ideology, or economic ideology. I chose to write about one of my favorite movies, 20th Century Women, from the point of view of gender ideology. Writing this paper opened my eyes not only to the role of gender ideology in the film, but also in my own life, enabling me to draw parallels between my own experience as a woman and academic texts—something that I greatly value in my education. Because I was taking a class called Feminist Theory (LST 320) at the same time, I was able to draw on the content I had learned in that course, which made the paper both more interesting and informative. I found that connecting HON 100 coursework with my other classes was something I could do often, which enabled me to advance my understanding of the topics I was learning.