New Honors Director Values Chance
to Help Craft Student Experience
By Sherry Fisher & Elizabeth Omara-Otunnu
Lynne Goodstein, a professor of sociology and women's studies, has been appointed associate vice provost and director of the honors program.
Goodstein joined the University Aug. 1 from Simmons College in Boston, where she was dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and Professional Studies.
In her new role at UConn, Goodstein also will have primary responsibili ty for study abroad, undergraduate research, and the individualized majors program.
Goodstein says she hopes to maintain and enhance UConn's national reputation as a leader in honors education.
One of her goals is "to provide opportunities for students to find something in themselves they want to nurture to excellence."
Goodstein says she values the opportunity to be involved in and help craft the undergraduate experience.
"There is nothing like the four years that students spend in college to develop themselves as people and develop their skills as professionals," she says. "They have the opportunity to explore ideas and disciplines at a level and breadth they never will again."
She plans to live in an apartment in South Campus for the fall semester; work closely with the Honors Council - a group of students seeking to improve the honors program; and in the future teach a freshman seminar.
Goodstein says the current size of the honors program - about 1,200 students, or 7 percent of undergraduate population - is appropriate for the size of the University.
"I feel strongly about and will work hard to ensure that students receive the level of mentorship, instruction, and supervision they are recruited here to receive," she says, "and that is related to the size of the program."
The small staff of the honors program - it has one associate director and two assistant directors, one of whom is also director of the Office of Undergraduate Research - works with the faculty to provide services to students. All honors classes are offered through the schools and colleges.
"Our task is to develop partnerships and networks, and to get people excited about working with honors students," Goodstein says. "The program is as much a catalyst as a service provider."
She hopes to build on the success of some of the current honors initiatives, such as the freshman seminars for honors students that are facilitated by upper class honors students.
She also wants to foster students' appreciation of the intersection between academic and non-academic life. "I hope they will understand the application of academic work to the world, and bring experiences from the outside into the classroom," she says. "We will continue to explore ways to help students make those connections."
Goodstein was associate dean of the graduate school at Pennsylvania State University from 1997-2000. She was a professor of administration of justice and women's studies from 1994-2000, served as director of the Women's Studies Program from 1986-1995, and from 1978-1994 was an assistant and later an associate professor of administration of justice at Penn State.
Her research has explored how inmates adjust to prisons and criminal sentencing, and more recently examined the experiences of women in the criminal justice system. She also has written about the position of women's studies in higher education.
Goodstein received a doctorate in social psychology in 1977 from the City University of New York's Graduate School and a bachelor's degree in psychology in 1970 from the University of Pennsylvania.
She has co-edited three books, including Women, Crime and Justice: Original Feminist Readings, Roxbury Publishing, with Claire Renzetti, and Determinate Sentencing and Imprisonment: A Failure of Reform, Anderson Publishing, with John Hepburn.